BY: Samantha Kemmer
Kennesaw State University is building a new phase of themed housing for upper-class students that is set to be opened for the fall semester of 2012.
Since August of 2011, construction has taken over the University Place dorms on the south end of campus as three new buildings are being built for the appropriately named “University Place Phase II” of the community. With an initial consideration of changing the name of the new phase, student feedback was so strong to keep the University Place or “UP” name that it was left alone.
“I was very proud of that knowing that the students were able to determine the name for their community,” said Kennesaw State University Director of Residence Life Jeff Cooper.
Each of the buildings, which open officially in August 2012, will consist of smaller sub-wings to create a more intimate cluster of neighbors. Each fully furnished dorm includes four private bedrooms, each with a private bathroom, a shared full kitchen and living room, a balcony and a laundry room.
The unique aspect of this new phase, however, is that some of the sub-wings will be divided based on special interest groups that exist on campus. A large variety of specialized groups will be included, ranging anywhere from student athletes and veterans to Engaged Residents with Global Origins and Music & Entertainment Living.
“KSU has always offered limited theme housing, but over the years more and more groups of students have expressed a desire to live with people who share certain common interests or experiences,” said Dean of Students Michael Sanseviro. “There are also many academic and co-curricular benefits to creating themed group living, so this phase significantly increases the university’s ability to meet the growing demand and support students to excel academically and socially.”
Along with these specialized rooms, University Place Phase II will also include several new and exciting amenities for the students. A beautiful new amphitheater will be located right in the middle of the community, built into the ground and creating a pathway leading from Town Hall to the core of the campus.
A multipurpose room is being built on the end of the largest building, which is closest to Town Hall. This room will have the flexibility and capability of meeting several different needs for various programs.
An open field similar to the Campus Green has been placed along the northern edge of the phase where students can enjoy recreational activities and other outdoor programs.
Unlike the other dorms on campus, each unit will include a Wi-Fi hotspot. The Wi-Fi will also be accessible throughout the outdoor amenities.
The cost of the new housing amounts to $7,740 per full year (a lease from August to July), or $645 per month. The difference in payment with this new phase, however, is that this will be billed in two equal installments of $3,870 and will be completed directly through the university.
Payments will be made through the Bursar, in hopes that this will eliminate the concerns about remembering to pay a monthly rent to the leasing office.
“Some students expressed concern about the higher price,” said Sanseviro. “But given all the extra amenities and the relatively minimal increase over the older housing units on campus, I believe the value is well worth the extra investment.”
Official room reservation for upper-class students will begin during open leasing in April, shortly after Spring Break. Displaced students can begin reserving rooms outside these blocks as early as March 12.
Residence Life is currently working with the various theme groups like Engaged Residents with Global Origins (Global Engagement) and Music and Entertainment that are doing bulk leasing. Students wishing to live in these theme groups can begin requesting a space now.
Once the process of displaced and open leasing begins, students will be able to reserve through an online room reservation system.
Students can contact Residence Life at 770-420-4388, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or through the Kennesaw State University Residence Life Facebook page in order to hold a room in a themed community or to find out more information.