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Dartmouth offers cash for students to move off campus

June 19, 2021 GMT

HANOVER, N.H. (AP) — Dartmouth College is providing up to $1 million to encourage students to move off campus to ease an on-campus housing crunch this fall.

Students can opt to have their names included in a one-time lottery for $5,000 to encourage as many as 200 returning students to live off campus, Mike Wooten, associate dean of residential life, said in an email to students who are on a housing waitlist.

Dartmouth is shifting some of its larger doubles to triples and converting lounges to student rooms where possible, but that isn’t enough to alleviate the housing crunch, Wooten said in the email.

“As expected, demand has exceeded our capacity,” he wrote. “Although this has been the case in prior years, interest in living on campus has understandably surged following the easing of COVID-19 restrictions.”

Some students said the school should be trying harder to house them, or at least better communicate why they can’t.

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“It hasn’t been made clear of what actions they’ve taken to mitigate this other than the lottery,” David Millman, a sophomore, told WMUR-TV.

Dartmouth has company in facing a housing crunch. And colleges are coming up with novel ways to deal with it.

The College of Idaho teamed up with a local company to create student housing out of shipping containers. The University of Tampa is offering $3,500 deferral scholarships for students who cannot find housing.

At Dartmouth, students have until 5 p.m. Monday to decide whether to place their names in the lottery. Those who do will be notified Wednesday whether they’ll be getting a cash bonus.