Rant of the Week: Housing Off-Campus: Limited and Frustrating


The housing process feels annoying and confusing. Let me start with the very controversial policy that only 50 Moravian students are allowed to live off campus every year.

I don’t understand if there is an issue with the city of Bethlehem or if it is just a simple Moravian procedure, but it is incredibly frustrating to all residents, especially in comparison with other colleges (even within the Lehigh Valley Association of Independent Colleges). 

When I talk to my friends from other campuses, they’re appalled when I tell them that Moravian students do not have the option to live off campus until senior year, and they still could lose that opportunity, even after they prepare. 

Woe not! There is another way to get around this: disregard the Moravian off-campus selection process, rent a private apartment, and register as a commuter. However, if you do this, it will be so much work you wish you never started the process. 

Let me start with the process of having to change your address on Moravian’s records, possibly changing your license (depending on if you’re an out-of-state resident), where you vote, and updating your address on all essential documents. This doesn’t even begin to address the issue of losing one’s financial aid due to changing residency status. 

Out of the 50 students that are approved to live off campus every year, imagine how many more prepared for the process yet were not accepted. 

There are so many reasons a student would want to live off campus, and it is so frustrating when it seems like Housing does not accommodate any of those reasons. 

I’ve spoken to so many people who just want an apartment to stay in Bethlehem over the summer, whether it be to work or even just stay away from their family at home. It doesn’t seem to make sense or be fair that most Moravian students will never even have access to this housing option. 

Even if seniors go through general selection with the point system, there’s still a chance that they can get horrible lottery numbers and receive some of the worst placements. There has to be a better alternative than this random lottery system. 

I understand why first-year students are forced to live on campus, as it allows them to acclimate to the campus. However, I am about 99% sure that I’ve adapted to this campus by the time I’ve reached my senior year, or at least I’d hope so. 

So, if Moravian controls this policy –is it only to ensure more students pay for room and board? Since apartments are most likely cheaper and allow higher rates of student supervision, it seems like an appealing option. But, students are clearly upset about this policy and want a change. 


It makes students feel like they do not have freedom. My meal plan hinges on where I live, yet,  required meal plans are one of the most illogical concepts I’ve ever heard. What if I don’t want a meal plan and I want to buy all my own groceries but wasn’t lucky enough to be placed in a dorm with a full kitchen? 

I could imagine dozens of scenarios in which meal plans should not depend on where someone lives, and once again, off-campus housing would at least somewhat ease this worry. 

I, as well as numerous other students, would save astronomical amounts of money if allowed to live off-campus, which would allow us to buy our own groceries. The dorm experience is not worth it, but students are forced to pay thousands of dollars for meal plans and disgusting dorms just because they live on campus. 

Students are expected to pay five thousand dollars to live in, essentially, inhumane dorms. Yeah, I’m talking about the lack of A/C in Bernie Willie. I don’t know why this is controversial, but residents should not be getting in trouble for falling asleep in the common rooms because it was the only air-conditioned part of the building. 

That is unacceptable. They were not sleeping there out of a pure desire to rebel but because it is impossible to fall asleep in a 90-degree room–yet, they’re reprimanded, not the people who thought it was okay to live in those conditions.