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Ohio State: Lottery required for 3rd- and 4th-years seeking on-campus housing

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Students watch the move-in unfolding process outside Busch House Residence Hall. Credit: Nick Roll | Campus Editor​​

Although the second-year living requirement guaranteed more students living on campus, those wishing to stay past their second year might be out of luck.

Despite the high volume of on-campus housing applications, Ohio State spokesman Ben Johnson said all first- and second-year students will have room on campus, but third- and fourth-year students will have to enter a lottery to secure a living space on campus.

“Based on housing projections for next year, and considering our first and second-year live-in requirement, we will be able to allocate a limited number of spaces for third- and fourth-year students,” Johnson said.

Results of the lottery won’t be announced until March 6, far past the traditional lease-signing season for those wishing to live off-campus.

OSU mandated that beginning with the 2016-17 school year, second-year students would be required to live on-campus. This mandate was simultaneous with the opening of four new residence halls on North Campus in Fall Semester 2016 that housed an additional 1,918 students.     

To combat the overcrowding that occurred this year, OSU housed some undergraduate students in off-campus housing located near the Gateway on North High Street.

“My roommate and I were supposed to be in Smith-Steeb this year. But we got a call about three weeks before move-in asking if we were interested in living in one of the Gateway apartments with two other girls we had indicated we would like to live in a suite with when housing applications were due,” said Lexi Ginwright, second-year in health information management and systems. “I think we are extremely lucky because our place is very nice and has a lot of amenities.”

Prior to 2016, Gateway apartments were only available for graduate students to rent. However, last year OSU housed a number of willing second-year students there in order to make more room in the residence halls.

“We all asked OSU about keeping our apartment in Gateway for next year, but we all got different and very vague answers,” said Tayler-Jo Mullins, second-year radiologic science and therapy. “OSU has no idea what they’re doing about housing next year.”

OSU has no plans in place to construct new residence halls, Johnson said.

Johnson said OSU’s enrollment target for first-year students on the Columbus campus for Fall Semester 2017 is between 7,000 and 7,100, and that he does not expect first- and second-year students to need to be housed off campus for the upcoming school year.

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