Approximately six juniors gathered in front of the housing office Friday to protest the new system of assigning eligibility points to each class.

The new system awards four points to rising seniors living off campus this year and all rising juniors.

Students in the class of 2006 objected claiming that even as seniors, they will not receive the highest number of eligibility points or obtain choice on-campus housing next year.

Rising seniors at the rally protested these changes chanting, “Class of 2006, housing get the problem fixed!”

“We have been screwed,” Mala Ramchandani (SFS ’06) said.

She said that she is concerned about living off campus due to the increased number of robberies, thefts and fires that have occurred recently. Ramchandani is number 388 on the waitlist for on-campus housing next year.

“[The university is] mocking me by giving me that number,” she said.

Ramchandani said that the effects of the lack of housing for the class of 2006 may prove negative for Georgetown in the future if students refuse to give alumni donations.

“They’re just going to lose out,” she said.

Housing officials said that they were unable to accommodate the large number of students who requested on-campus housing in recent years.

“Students were concerned about their safety after Sept. 11 and the sniper, so more people wanted to live on-campus,” Jonalyn Ware Greene, executive director of student housing, said.

Because of record demand for on-campus housing in 2003, the university was forced to create 123 triples in double-occupancy rooms to accommodate the student demand.

Greene said that housing is currently trying to fix the system by first determining the “normal” number of students who live on campus, although there is not enough space for everyone.

“We do not have room for all of our undergraduate students,” she said.

Of 5,055 beds, about 1,700 are reserved for first- and second-year students, Greene said. The rest can go to eligible juniors and seniors.

Some juniors were angry that sophomores now live in apartments while half of the junior class lives off campus.

“Sophomores should be forced to live in dorms,” Jennifer Johnson (SFS ’06) said. “I have to walk around garbage and vomit in my stairwell – it’s disgusting.”

Nearly half of the rising seniors decided to live off campus this year and defer a possible third year of housing until their senior year. This resulted in over 200 empty beds on-campus at the beginning of the semester.

Johnson said that the current system works against class of 2006 transfer students like herself.

“Even though transfers live here for three years, they’re still subject to the same number of points as their graduating class,” she said.

Nick Michiels (COL ’06) coordinated the protest.

Members of GUSA, including President Kelley Hampton (SFS ’05), led a meeting with Interhall representatives on Sunday in an effort to resolve housing selection concerns.

GUSA assembly member Pravin Rajan (SFS ’07), who also represents the Campus Living Advisory Council, said they were able to come up with various proposals to help resolve the situation.

He said rising seniors who lived off campus last year could potentially receive an extra housing selection point next year. Rajan, however, said that the long-term goal of the meeting is to create a new working, comprehensive housing policy.

These proposals will be presented simultaneously to the GUSA assembly and the housing office today.

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