The Maneater

Center, Responsibility and Discovery halls will close next year

An email from Frankie Minor to student staff said the decision to take the halls offline was due to low freshman enrollment.

Center Hall.

Center, Responsibility and Discovery residence halls will be “taken offline” next year due to low freshman enrollment, Residential Life Director Frankie Minor said in an email obtained by The Maneater.

Minor said in the email that the department still anticipates employing most or all staff members hired.

“Historically every year between now and August, various situations occur that result in position openings, e.g. normal attrition and voluntary staff choices, as well as unplanned academic or personal challenges,” the email said. “If necessary, we will offer alternative employment opportunities at comparable compensation to the remaining staff.”

If ResLife needs more space after ROAR, the housing selection process, starts April 10, the department will bring halls back online individually.

“This is an early move to try to be as prudent as possible with the resources we have,” MU spokeswoman Liz McCune said.

If demand does not increase, that brings the total number of halls that will be offline next year to seven. The department announced in April 2016 it would be closing Respect and Excellence. In December, Residence Halls Association President Matt Bourke confirmed that the department planned to take Schurz and McDavid offline based on decreased anticipated class size.

At the time, Minor said in a presentation to RHA Congress that 23.5 percent fewer freshmen than anticipated signed housing contracts. The email Sunday stated that ResLife had ”better information” that indicated a need for “additional adjustments.”

The halls were selected because their closure will disrupt fewer returning students and the facilities have higher-than-average utility costs, according to the email.

“It is much easier to expand our capacity later than to consolidate it later,” Minor said in the email.

ResLife will also be canceling eight Freshman Interest Groups due to low anticipated demand. The email stated that these eight FIGs were similar to others that will still be available.

This is a developing story. Stay with The Maneater for updates.

Edited by Katie Rosso | krosso@themaneater.com

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