Deciphering priority points
Housing applications are in and the priority point process for room selection has begun for 1,200 students who applied for room and board in fall 2010.
Between Feb. 1 and Feb. 19, students had the opportunity to fill out the housing application online and submit a deposit of $325.
According to Assistant Director for Housing and Residence Life Cheryl Janus, the students who applied by the required date are eligible to participate in the online room selection process in April.
“It’s the same application that the students have been filling out for the past year,” Janus said.
Students who applied on time will receive an e-mail by March 1 containing the number of priority points they have received from the academic year. Clubs and organizations were originally given until Feb. 12 to submit their rosters, but the deadline was extended to Feb. 15 due to the snow day.
The priority point system is a 40 point system that is broken down by judicial status, residence hall citizenship, campus involvement and grades. The Housing Department attends nationwide conferences involving information about the priority point system.
“Calls come in everyday from different universities who want to find out how our priority point system works. I definitely think it has increased the quality of residence students we have here,” Janus said. “Our average GPA on campus is a 3.0 which is amazing and so high. I think it is geared around this priority point system.”
According to Janus, the system has increased the level of student involvement on campus because students want to work hard to get a lot of priority points to obtain on campus housing.
“Students know that housing in this area off campus is very expensive and living on campus is a commodity,” Janus said. “It’s increased our level of involvement, for example, the pirate pride section of the priority points where students earn credits for attending athletic events. We had 1,500 students come out to a soccer game in the fall, that’s amazing. It’s created a much more positive environment on campus.”
The point distribution is different for each category in the process.
For example, for both grades and judicial status, there are a set number of points awarded based upon students’ GPA and sanction level.
However, for campus involvement and residence hall citizenship the number is calculated by comparing the involvement of the average student to the individual applicant.
The points vary every year distinctly because the involvement of the students is different every year.
“We spend the next two weeks calculating and looking at what are the trends and how many people fall into what category,” Janus said. “The one that is pretty clear cut is judicial and academic. It’s very easy to figure out at least 20 of their points or half of their points.”
Lottery numbers are randomly generated by the computing system and are specifically assigned by priority points the student has been awarded, not by the actual year of the student.
Students are encouraged to contact Cheryl Janus if they have any questions or concerns about their priority points and lottery numbers over the next few months.
Jacqueline DeBenedetto can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org