There was no announcement, nor was there an official date set. But on April 10th, students started camping on the floor outside of the Hess Rec Center, waiting for a chance to get into one of the most desired halls on campus: Cutler Apartment Complex. The sight resembles a line of people camping out to get big name concert tickets.
Michelle Kubo is a sophomore who claimed her spot on Wednesday morning and intends to keep it. She’s lived in Skarland Hall and Stevens Hall and is ready for a change of pace and a change of food options. “If I live in Cutler, I won’t have to have a meal plan. I feel like the food [at UAF] is really unhealthy and I can’t wait to cook my own food,” Kubo said.
Tiana Elkins and Sierra Corsetti got in line right behind Kubo at noon on Wednesday. Elkins bounced on the mattress that she brought from her room. “It’s a TempurPedic,” she said, “And it’s a lot better than sleeping on the hard ground.” They are also excited about potentially living in Cutler. Corsetti says that she likes quiet areas and Cutler offers a unique dorm experience at UAF. “It just feels separate from everyone else. Plus, I only have to clean my own bathroom.”
Both girls have developed a plan with their respective groups to stay until Monday morning. The Department of Residence life accepts housing applications for groups of 4 beginning on Monday at 8:00 AM and both Kubo and Corsetti have plans so that their spots are always held even while they are in class. Elkins said she has friends that aren’t vying for a position in line but are willing to fill blank spots in the schedule anyway. Kubo laughed as she discussed her schedule. “I’m actually supposed to be in class right now,” she said. “I just didn’t want to go so I’m sitting here.”
Kubo asked friends who currently live in Cutler when she was supposed to start camping and followed their suggestions, but other than that, she didn’t really know how people knew to gather blankets and play the waiting game. “But it’s totally worth it,” she said.