Free laundry comes to SHU, draws mixed reviews

Housing  and  Residence Life (HRL) has officially upgraded all laundry rooms on campus.

The rooms are equipped with new, high-efficiency  washer and dryer machines. Residents are no longer required to pay per load.

In  January,  The  Setonian reported that Student Government Association  President Rishi Shah announced in a report last fall that free laundry “would be important to students as they would no longer have to accumulate massive loads of laundry to put all in one load. This would in turn allow students to freely do smaller loads resulting in less damage to machines and cleaner clothes.”

Glory Akoh/Staff Photographer
Laundry rooms on campus were upgraded with LG Giant C+ Platinum washer and dryer machines.

Jessica Proano, associate director of residential education & student development, said HRL is excited to provide this new, easier laundry system to students. “You walk in, you press start and it (the laundry machine) goes,” Proano said. “That’s it.”

She explained that a student can go into the laundry room, place a detergent pod inside the drum or detergent liquid inside the dis- penser, select the cycle, and press “start.”

Under HRL’s previous contract with CSC ServiceWorks, students were required to  pay $1.25  per load for both the washer and dry- er, totaling up to $2.50 per load of laundry using Pirate’s Gold. Now, under the new contract with Fowl- er Laundry Companies, students are no  longer required to  swipe their  campus ID  into  a  touch- screen computer before operating the machines.

The machines, which are both LG Giant C+ Platinum models, now come with several  new features. Students can select either hot, warm or cold washes in addition to delicates and “super wash” options. The dryers operate with high, medium or low temperatures or with no heat.

Proano said students can also file a service request on malfunctioning machines by scanning the QR codes on a poster in the laundry
rooms, downloading the  service app, scanning the barcodes on the machines and  filling out  information. She added that students should  also report  problems to their housing directors.

Anam Aziz, a sophomore public relations major who lives in Xavier Hall, said the new laundry system is a lot more efficient for those who live nearby, especially since she used to go home and do laundry every weekend to save money.

“I think it’s pretty nice that laundry is free because a lot of people can’t afford to put that extra money on their campus card,” Aziz said. “It’s financially efficient and more convenient for students.”

Proano  said  residents are  required to pay a fee of $25 per semester in their housing bills, totaling up to $50 of laundry for the academic year. But some students have complained that the free laundry is one of the causes of the increased tuition rate this year.

Others, like Aleksandra Golda, a sophomore management and mar- keting major, say that free laundry is nothing to complain about and that there are other factors for the tuition increase.

“I am aware that there are many students who don’t appreciate the free laundry because it caused a tuition increase,” Golda said. “But they don’t  realize that the tuition increase was not  just because of laundry, but because of other factors that are included in residential life, like the cafeteria renovations.” In July, the Office of the Provost announced in an email the tuition increase for the 2019-2020 academic year in its 2020 Fiscal Year Budget Book Rate Sheet. According to  the  document, “the pro- posed increase for all rooms is 3% + $25 for unlimited laundry.” The document does not describe what is specifically included in the cost of housing.

“Every decision that  Housing and Residence life makes is ultimately for the overall experience of the residential student in some capacity, whether it be safety, well-being, health  or  entertainment,”  Proano  said.  “Whatever it is, we try to think of what the students’ best outcome is. We want this to have a positive impact on the residential population. There’s also something to be said for being able to kind of have what your friends in other institutions might have.”

She continued,  “Laundry is such a basic human necessity. You need clean clothes. I wonder how many students were being able to thrive with that  because it’s  something they couldn’t  afford. I  think  it’s something that’s important. A lot of it goes down back to the University’s mission of human dignity.”

Liam Oakes can be reached  at Find him on Twitter @lm_oakes.

Author: Liam Oakes

Liam Oakes is the editor of the Campus Life section. He is a public relations major from Andover, New Jersey. Follow him on Twitter: @lm_oakes

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