19-year-old Western Heights East resident Brett Collins can’t believe his time at the new freshman-only dorms is going to be over soon. Now that spring break has ended, the accounting major realized finals aren’t too far behind, meaning that his first year as a Bronco will be over soon. It also means that Collins will be leaving the palatial Western Heights for a humbler dorm come next fall, Valley II.
“I just don’t know what I’m going to do!” Exclaimed Collins as he paced his room, a sizable, tall-ceilinged dorm decorated with Red Wings posters and pictures of his girlfriend. “I just can’t leave, I just can’t!”
The freshman-only dorm was built last year, and since then, has been used as showpiece of every campus tour to ensnare potential Broncos. Those lucky and rich enough to snag a spot in the dorms enjoyed clean living spaces, air-conditioned rooms, proximity to most of campus, and laundry swipes loaded onto their Bronco Card. It’s a far cry from the drudgery of the Valleys.
“Housing sign-ups came, and I wanted to stay here, but the system wouldn’t let me,” Collins said. “So, I had to either live in the Burnhams or the Valleys, but they’re both awful and old, so I randomly chose a Valley. Did you know Garneau/Harvey is up that big hill? I didn’t.”
His roommate, Daniel Braxton, is just as nervous to leave the luxury housing, and will be staying in the Burnhams next year.
“How will the room get cool?” Braxton said. “I mean, there’s no air conditioning in the Burnhams, right?”
Both residents have gone to Sindecuse Health Center for a new group therapy program. Mental Health Counselor Dana Ryans hopes the program will help them cope with the fact that they will not be living in the lap of luxury after the end of April.
“We finally had to start a new program that was exclusive to freshmen in the Heights,” Ryans said. “At first, it was just a few people who claimed they were having an existential crisis because they had to leave the Heights for a rundown dorm, and then they came in droves. We had to handle it.”
The therapy consists of a 5-step program, one for each stage of grief, and both the students and mental health professionals at Sindecuse believe that it has begun to work.
“Counseling has helped a little,” Collins said. “I’ve learned that other college students live in older dorms like the Valleys and still do just fine. I’m scared though. I hate spiders.”
There is still quite a bit of concern from the students over the changes to come.
“I’m going to have to walk three miles just to get to main campus,” whined Braxton. “Plus, I don’t want to live in something that looks like a bunker from, like, the Civil War.”
After Collins learned the Valleys have suite bathrooms, he was shocked that he, and not a maid service, would have to clean the bathroom.
“Maybe I can just hire a maid from the Heights to come in to clean,” He said. “It’s like one of the mantras that the counselors gave us: God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the money to change things that I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”
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