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Transfer tales: finding a place to live at a new school

Upon transferring to Ohio State, hundreds of students are faced with a decision on where to live. That process can be complex when students come from areas outside of Ohio State. Credit: Lantern File Photo

Finding housing on Ohio State’s campus can be challenging for any student, but for the thousands of students arriving on campus as transfers, the task can be more daunting.

“It definitely stressed me out a little bit since I didn’t find out where I was living or who my roommate would be until maybe two weeks before I moved in,” said Paul Morrissey, a second-year in business administration who transferred to Ohio State from Grove City College in Pennsylvania. “If there’s a way I could have found out any sooner, that would have been great.”

Morrissey ended up living in a suite on North Campus, a result that pleased him.

“I came from an apartment-type setting at my past college, so I wasn’t really looking forward to coming back to a dorm situation with a roommate,” Morrissey said. “But the dorms are really nice, I like my roommate, and it’s in a great location.”

Not all transfer students have experiences as positive as Morrissey’s.

“I met [my housemates] on Craigslist because I did not have access to the Ohio State Facebook housing page, which turned out to be a negative experience,” said Nathan Mugge, a first-year in welding engineering and a transfer from Concordia University in Wisconsin who lived off campus in his first semester. “People didn’t pay rent and messed up the various facilities of the house and the bathroom, so it really wasn’t useable.”

Mulle said additional efforts by the university to help guide transfer students toward reliable landlords and companies could help others avoid situations like his.

Other transfer students, like Sam Ferbrache, a second-year in psychology and Columbus State transfer, elect to commute from home.

“Because I’m a transfer I didn’t have to live on campus, so I commute from home about half an hour away,” said Ferbrache, a Columbus native who lives near Grove City.

For transfer students who do choose to live on campus, the process has become pretty straightforward, said Dave Isaacs, a spokesman for the Office of Student Life.

“It is guaranteed that we will find a place for you if you are in that first- or second-year window. If you are not, we will try to accommodate you if we have the space,” Isaacs said.

The university also does its part to inform underclassmen transfer students throughout the process, assuming they apply for housing in time.

“We’ll get names from the admissions office of students who are transferring, and we will start emailing them on a weekly basis with information they need to know, and how to respond,” Isaacs said. “We will continue to accept housing contracts until we are full.”

Students who are unable to find space in the dorms are not necessarily given alternative resources, however.

“If we are unable to accommodate any students, then we’ll refer them to student life’s off-campus and commuter student services office,” Isaacs said. “They have a great number of resources for helping students find housing off campus.”

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