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The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

New “Housing Games” to replace traditional housing application process

*Disclaimer: This article is from an April Fool’s issue*

After a record-shattering 96 percent of Guilford students “just forgot” to fill out their housing applications this spring, Residence Life will be implementing a new system for the housing lottery in 2013. Next year, the housing application and lottery process will be replaced by a Hunger Games–style fight to the death among eight students.

Game Maker Kris Gray and Head Peace Keeper Susanna Westberg expect that the new system will streamline the housing process.

“The housing lottery has to be mandatory for students to participate,” said Gray. “No matter how many emails we send, Buzz messages we post or posters we hang, we have never gotten more than about 20 percent of students to fill out their housing applications on time. (Westberg) and I had a meeting and realized that if we can’t change the students’ behavior, we just have to change the system.”

Now, instead of relying on students to take five minutes out of their busy February schedules to fill out the online housing application, Residence Life will host a compulsory “Reaping” at the beginning of March. One student from each of the eight residence halls (the North and South Apartments count as one “hall” each) will be chosen as Tributes to participate in the Housing Games.

The eight Tributes will compete during the last weekend of March as part of the Serendipity festivities. The last student standing will receive housing and meal plans free of charge for the rest of their stay at Guilford, and the students from the winning residence hall will be up first for room selection.

“(For example) if the Tribute from Mary Hobbs wins, then all the Hobbs residents will choose their rooms first,” explained Gray. “The first runner-up might be from Bryan, so the Bryan residents get to choose their rooms second, and so on.”

Like any major overhaul, this new system will not be without its challenges as Residence Life implements the changes.

“We’re still working out a few of the details,” said Westberg. “There will have to be a system for ranking Tributes who die simultaneously, and we aren’t sure yet how to assign rooms to transfer students.”

Despite the administration’s enthusiasm for the Housing Games, the changes have some students worried.

“I just don’t think such a dramatic change is necessary,” said junior Elizabeth Dzugan. “Why not use a Goblet of Fire to make room assignments, like they do at High Point (University)?”

“It is pretty controversial,” acknowledged Illustrious Leader Aaron Fetrow. “But we have seen time and time again that if you coddle students, you do not get results. It is time for Guilford to go balls to the wall to make the housing process more streamlined.”

Senior Zach Lynn voiced concerns about the loss of revenue to the college.

“Seven students will be killed every year,” said Lynn. “That’s about a quarter million in tuition that we will just lose — not to mention the fact that prospective students might decide to go elsewhere and avoid the Reaping. But of course, watching students fight to the death will be a fantastic addition to Serendipity.”
Though some students have valid misgivings regarding the new system, in a recent survey filled out by all 12 students who read The Buzz daily, over 58 percent said that they “do not care” about the changes to the housing lottery system.
“I didn’t know Guilford had a housing lottery,” commented one survey-taker who did not give a name. “I don’t think most students do. So it doesn’t matter much whether it changes.”
“This is the type of apathy we are trying to combat,” said Gray. “And it looks like hand-to-hand combat is the best way to do so.”
The change is expected to positively affect the efficiency of college processes, in accordance with Guilford’s second Strategic Long Range Plan.
“Students, mortal combat and Guilford College — it might seem strange to have those words in the same sentence,” said Lord and Master Kent Chabotar. “But when you look at our aspirational schools, they are all going in the same direction. Elon (University) and Davidson (College) have both implemented similar practices.
“It is time for Guilford to enter the twenty-first century. We can’t do that if students aren’t killing each other for my amusement.”

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