In any case, I'm not sure as to how the racket at John Quincy Adams House operates, but I can sure tell you that I'm no fan of the iHousing process.
Regarding the process, GW offers a posturing, perfectly crafted public statement that is more at odds with reality than some of the statements recently uttered by our current President:
In our first year, 80% of students were assigned to one of their top three preferences and the process has made students' housing assignments easier, more flexible, and more individualized. GW's campus housing experience is second to none, contributing to overall student success, permitting greater opportunities for campus involvement, and offering safe and convenient services to residents.First things first, let's note that the iHousing statement is on a different web site entirely from the Living@GW site, underscoring the utter mess of the entire department.
Now onto their asinine claims. Let's begin with the math.
I believe that the 80% figure is true, but I believe that that is by no means impressive. They have not even bothered to identify a base figure for the 80%, and so that leaves me to conjecture. But I will make an educated guess and say that it is based on the number of undergraduates who enrolled for the 2006-2007 academic year on all of the campuses (Foggy Bottom, Mount Vernon, Virginia). That figure is 10,032 according to the factsheet from GW's Office of Institutional Research. Understand that that number is essentially the amount of people who are currently sophomores on campus (it does NOT simply mean "all enrolled undergraduates"; rather, it means "those undergraduates that enrolled in the University beginning in Fall 2006).
So with that we can do some simple mathematical manipulations and figure out that if iHousing satisfied 80% of that population, then it also left some 2,006 people unhappy. That's two-thousand-and-six. How ironic! The number of people left out by the iHousing process in that year corresponds to the year of their enrollment. Perhaps that is an omen signaling that that figure will continue to grow.
Secondly, GW Housing really needs to get over this idea that "GW's campus housing experience is second to none, contributing to overall student success..." -- and what do they even mean by this exactly? What kind of success? Academic, personal, professional, what?
Let's contrast their lofty, highfalutin language with some that I found from a pretty reliable source: the Facebook status box.
Friend #1: is reaaally mad about FULBRIGHT...akh... (25 minutes ago)Need I continue? Well, there is just one more, this time from a graduate student that I work with expressing his sentiments on the issue:
Friend #2: 2109 F Street...? (46 minutes ago)
Friend #3: is pretty sure ihousing can go die now. (2 hours ago)
Friend #4: is pissed as hell that he's stuck in Potomac next year. (3 hours ago)
Friend #5: is homeless for next year, yet somehow still has more pressing issues consuming her time to even care! CHEERS!! (3 hours ago)
Friend #6: is WTF? WAITLIST?? Fuck you housing, we didn't get a dorm. Don't complain that you didn't get your top pick. (3 hours ago)
Friend #7: got screwed by housing. (5 hours ago)
Friend #8: is um ok wait no. Potomac House?! (5 hours ago)
Colleague #1: is happy that he is not dealing with GW Housing like everyone else right now. (1 hour ago)Looks like we're starting to see the iHousing fountain start to dole out discontent, dismay, and in some cases, possibly even distress.
In mine, it's somewhere between dismay and distress since I am fall into last year's 20% (which should theoretically remain at 20% this year if they have not changed their metrics since the number of enrolled students this year has only dropped by 174, and trust me, they have not changed their metrics given their buoyant and overflowing self-aggrandizement).
My top 7 preferences did not include 2109 F Street, but I suppose that that's perfectly acceptable to the folks over at JQA House.
Amazingly, more confusion ensued in my case. After receiving my assignment email (timestamped 8:06 AM), I received another one saying that I was on the waitlist but assuring me that I had no need to worry (timestamped 8:25 AM). In this email, some lovely representative of this most disorganized office wrote:
As a rising second-year student you are guaranteed housing and will be assigned to housing.According to this I am now allowed to preference certain senior and junior housing options in my application...but I thought I already received an assignment (albeit an unsatisfactory one). So am I on the waitlist because my assignment was not in comportment with my preferences, or did they email me erroneously, or what?
To (hopefully) receive answers to these questions, I'm going to be visiting the wonderful JQA House (located next to Rice Hall, how fitting!) after my class ends today at 5pm (lucky for me that the housing office is open until 5:30). Updates to this will follow.
And for now, I will offer an explicit call to action: I would ask that everyone dissatisfied and upset with the way that the iHousing process has treated them email Seth Weinshel, director of assignments for GW Housing Programs and voice your grievances. I would advise against expecting a lengthy or well-thought out reply since I got an off-the-cuff and seemingly harried response when I emailed him for a Hatchet story I was researching. But this is not just me, as you can tell from the numbers and the real-time Facebook responses. So let's mount a campaign to get GW to conduct a comprehensive review of iHousing and to address the needs of students whose preferences have been totally neglected.
UPDATE: I visited GW Housing Programs today at 5:10pm to find that the second email was in fact erroneous. I was told that it should not have happened and to just disregard it.
In other words, I'm just stuck with this now. *Sigh*.