Due to consistently low enrollment, Wyckoff Hall is closed indefinitely, following the shut down of two of the dormitory’s four floors last year.
While the current freshman class is about the same size as last year’s, the University decided to completely close the dormitory in order to conserve energy.
“There’s some cost savings that we’ve gained from doing that,” Vice President of Student Affairs Nathan Thomas said. “It’s our smallest building which makes sense why you can close it and not see strains in other places around campus too.”
Other residence halls do not have as many open rooms this year in order to leave the 180 beds in Wyckoff empty.
“[The other dorms] are pretty full,” Thomas said. “It’s not like we’ve tripled up anybody or we’ve got people living in places where you wouldn’t want people living, they are just at their normal occupancy. Most of the buildings in use are probably at 95 percent of being full.”
Multiple areas of campus have been affected by the decreased enrollment, according to Thomas.
“There’s a lot of moving parts when we talk about this,” Thomas said. “Wyckoff is just an easy visual to say, ‘Oh yeah, that’s closed,’ but most of it in all honesty students wouldn’t recognize because we’ve been committed to not impacting the student experience, both academically and outside the classroom.”
Junior mechanical engineering major Samantha Bichsel said she wasn’t aware of Wyckoff’s closing.
“I know this happens because enrollment goes down and tuition goes up,” Bichsel said.
Thomas said enrollment management is a university-wide strategy.
“We are looking at a lot of ways in which we can capture the incoming student market,” Thomas said. “We are preparing to launch some pretty sophisticated social media initiatives. There are a lot of pieces in place about how we address enrollment.”
Thomas said he hopes the Wyckoff closure is not permanent.
“In every way we want Wyckoff to be a residence hall and we want it to be full of students, ” Thomas said. “We will have to make those assessments going forward, but we hope in the near future it becomes a residence hall again. That’s the plan.”