Freshmen face housing struggles


Florida A&M freshmen are finding themselves in off-campus housing due to the lack of available on campus housing. 

Angela Peterson, a senior registration officer said, as of Sept. 10, there are 13,226 students enrolled at FAMU. Based on preliminary data, 2,221 of those students are first time students and 2,309 students are returning freshmen.  

There are 10 dormitories on-campus: McGuinn Hall, Diamond Hall, Cropper Hall, Truth Hall, Gibbs Hall, Paddyfote, Wheatley, Palmetto South, Palmetto North and Phase III. Based on FAMU Housing records, there are only 2078 bed spaces in total.  

Because there are not enough housing spaces for the current number of students, students are forced to reside off campus.

Courtney Wright, a first year criminal justice student from Pompano Beach is not pleased with staying off-campus. 

“I feel as if I’m not getting the entire college life,” she said.  After being asked was it her choice to stay off-campus, her response was, “FAMU ran out of rooms.”

Wright is one of the many freshmen that will not experience the on campus lifestyle. Although there are many students that will not be familiar with this experience, there are many students that were and are fortunate.

Residing on campus is great to Nadia Deravine, 20, a third year political science and social work student from Miami. 

“I enjoy staying on campus and it’s convenient. I don’t complain about energy usage, and I don’t stress about bills like the off-campus students.” 

Another important factor that plays a role in staying off or on-campus is finance.

Staying off campus can be quite expensive compared staying on campus. After having no choice but to stay off campus, Courtney Wright resides in the Adams Pointe apartment complex and pays an average of $455 per month, including overages.  In a year, Wright is paying $5,460 for rent.

Deravine, who resides Phase III, pays about $4,588 for fall and spring semesters, without worrying about overages.

Many students agree that housing is pivotal component to the freshman experience. Deravine holds very positive memories of staying on campus her first year at FAMU.

“My freshman experience was amazing,” she said, “I loved every minute of it.”