A closer look from student reporter Kaitie Devlin:
About two years ago, the University of Illinois Springfield decided on a new mandate for student housing. The rule entailed that students must live on campus for their 1st and 2nd years of schooling. Even though the rule was made two years ago, the regulation was not implemented on campus, until now.
With the cost of housing along with more incoming students and their parents wanting to save money, could this requirement really be worth it in the long run?
“Parents also have to think of this as an investment in their child. Because there's a lot of research out there that shows that students who do live on campus basically have a better academic experience overall, they tend to persist to graduation, they have higher GPA's, there more connected to their campus, and they have a greater overall college experience for having lived on campus,” UIS Housing Director John Ringle said.
UIS has also reached near capacity at 94% of students in housing. Ringle says he looks forward to buildings that are completely full.
UIS has also been known in the past for being a big commuter school. Being a UIS student myself, I know there are several campus clubs and activities that have begun for commuters.
"We would hope that they would be connected to all the other things that might be offered by UIS. Not just what's going on on campus, but Sangamon Auditorium events, athletic events, all those things that contribute to a commuter students connection to the campus and hopefully they would utilize that to make the best of their experience as well,” Ringle said.
For any rule, there are exceptions. Ringle says that 1st and 2nd year students who live within a 40 mile radius from UIS may get a waiver to commute to school. Ringle also advises that even if you do live in the 40 mile requirement, you still need to turn in the exemption form. You have up until move in day, but Ringle says the sooner the better.
For the next few years, we may be seeing a lot of changes as UIS as it continues to grow. “The bigger the better” appears to be the goal for UIS with not only student capacity, but also the campus as a whole.