HAYS – Fort Hays State University has seen a significant increase in overall enrollment for the new academic year, with a resulting increase in demand for student housing. To meet the demand, FHSU has entered into an agreement with Motel 6, 3404 Vine St., to provide overflow housing.
“We are currently in an overflow housing situation for male residents,” said Dr. Shana Meyer, assistant vice president for student affairs. “To accommodate all of our students, FHSU is providing returning male residential students with housing at Motel 6. While assigning on-campus housing is the optimal solution, the university is providing alternate accommodations until all students can be placed in residence halls.”
Dr. Edward H. Hammond, FHSU president, explained that the overflow resulted from an increase in the rate of retention and from increased recruitment, together with the delay to replace Agnew Hall. “Two new on-campus residence facilities are planned to open in fall 2012 and fall 2013,” he said.
Michael Berges, general manager of Motel 6 and a 2004 FHSU graduate, said he was excited about the opportunity to assist his alma mater. He also noted that several of his staff members attend FHSU. “We are eager to provide a safe, comfortable place for students to stay over the coming months,” Berges said.
“Fort Hays State University requires freshmen to live in our residence halls due to the retention benefits one receives while living on campus,” Meyer said. “Our upperclassmen, while choosing to return to the halls, already have a good start at FHSU. We have determined that upperclassmen will first be housed in Motel 6. We will move them back to the on-campus halls as space opens up.”
Meyer said a shuttle service would be provided by FHSU between the motel and the campus beginning at 6:45 a.m. and continuing to 7:15 p.m., which corresponds with dining service hours. Students who reside at Motel 6 will be able to use their meal plans on campus.
There is a possibility that students will be housed at Motel 6 for the duration of the fall semester, depending upon the numbers of cancellations received due to no shows. Meyer said she was confident students who are housed at Motel 6 during the fall semester would receive an on-campus assignment by the beginning of the spring semester. FHSU will provide transportation and assistance with moving belongings back to campus.
Meyer said that while the situation was unusual for FHSU, a number of institutions around the country house students in motels.
All housing assignments for the motel will be coordinated through FHSU’s Residential Life Office. Students will be assigned to double occupancy rooms. The motel will not permit a student to check in if he has not been pre-authorized by the Residential Life Office.
Motel 6 is a full service motel. The front desk is staffed at all times. In addition, the Residential Life Office will provide staff who will reside in the motel and maintain regular duty coverage just as they would if they were assigned to a campus residence hall. This is in addition to the security already being provided by the motel management.
“We are excited that so many students have chosen to live with Residential Life for the 2011-2012 school year,” Meyer said. “While our overflow situation was not anticipated, it marks an exciting time in Fort Hays State University’s history. Anyone who needs further information should contact the Office of Residential Life at 785-628-4245 or go online for updates at www.fhsu.edu.”