University of Kentucky facing housing shortage

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) —  The University of Kentucky is facing a housing shortage this year, after a new record of enrollment.

The university is expecting roughly 6,400 to 6,500 new students this year. And while living on campus is not a requirement, many students want to live on campus.

Jay Blanton, Chief Communications Officer for the university, says 85 to 90% of students want to live on campus.

In the past 10 years, UK has built 14 new residence halls, giving the university a total of 20. Blanton says the rooms in these buildings can be “reconfigured or modified to accommodate students as needed.”

Due to the high number of students wanting to live on campus, UK is trying a new style of dorm called “Tri It”. This new style is a modification of the two bedroom dorm, with a bunk bed and extra dresser in one of the rooms and the other a traditional room. Students who choose the bunk room in “Tri It’ will receive a $2,000 discount and students in the single room will receive a $500 discount.

Students still have the option to choose the “Tri It” or four bedroom housing.

“Our first priority is the safety, the well-being, the ability of our students to succeed and do well and housing is essential to that. It’s a critical part of student success. So, everything we do with these kinds of options is always with keeping the students’ success first in mind,” says Blanton.

Blanton believe that these accommodations will provide extra benefits students, such as more pricing options.

For now, he says they’re trying to answer all questions and concerns from students and parents.

He also believes it’s important students live on campus, especially during their first year.

“We’ve done a lot of research over the last several years. And we know that when students live on campus, even for just that first year, their GPA’s are higher, they get more involved in student life, more involved in student organizations, they are more likely, more apt to develop deeper friendships and connections. And they are also closer to all the amenities we have on campus,” says Blanton.

He also believes they will be able to accommodate all students who applied on or before the housing deadline.

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