4 Years on Campus


For my blog post this week I would like to complain about discuss the issue of off-campus housing for the future classes of Bucknell seniors. With addition of multiple buildings to campus since the construction began this summer, many students on campus are wondering what will happen with on campus versus off campus housing.

In the plan as I understand it, the University will try to start limiting the number of people living downtown and is trying to achieve a trend of fewer and fewer people living downtown year to year. This is an interesting idea because Bucknell is increasing the number of students they are accepting every year. This means that the same number of seniors have to live downtown regardless of whether they increase the amount of on campus housing because the freshman number is also increasing. So why not let people live downtown?

There is also a plan to demolish around 10 houses on 6th street in two years due to an expansion of Hufnagle Park and the fact that they are decrepit and in a flood zone. Although this idea makes sense, it is sad to think that some of the history of the students of Bucknell will no longer exist. Many of these houses have existed and withstood so many Bucknell student classes that it is almost an important tradition to uphold.

Downtown housing is an essential part of college life and is an important stepping stone from dorm life as an underclassmen to living in a house as an upperclassmen, and then onto a different living situation once you are out of college. Living downtown lets you get acquainted with cooking for yourself, cleaning (sometimes…), and understanding how bills are paid and doing so in a timely manner. Downtown housing helps prepare a lot of students for living past college and also lets them be more social in a space that is specifically for seniors. This is advantageous for seniors as well as underclassmen because the underclassmen have their own space and so do the seniors. This is the best situation for everyone. Hopefully the University will realize this before they start planning to destroy years of student

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11 Responses to 4 Years on Campus

  1. ALXLIONS says:

    I agree with you Alex. I don’t think the university should be able to tell a student where to live after the sophomore year. If a student wants to live in a dorm senior year, let them but if they want to own a house then they should have the opportunity. I think the university is making a big mistake limiting the junior and senior living opportunities.

  2. mcrawford says:

    I agree, I feel downtown housing is a very important part of the culture at Bucknell for seniors and is a great way to somewhat understand how to live in the real world. It seems as though this is not going to be an issue for seniors at least in the coming years if Bucknell continues to accept more students and therefore continues to have limited campus housing.

    Concerning the second half of your post, I feel it would be very sad to see 6 houses knocked down, although it seems if they are going to expand the park and prevent future flood problems this is a good decision. I understand many memories happened in these houses but we have to look forward and think about what is best for the future Bucknellians and the dangers of living in a high risk flood area.

  3. katiebaum13 says:

    I live downtown and feel that it has been a good opportunity to get a feel of what the real world is like. I have never paid rent or any type of bills and this is a good learning experience on how to manage my finances and stay organized in making sure I’m always on time. It teaches us life skills that we will need in the future. I love living downtown, and feel it will be a detriment to the school by limiting students living downtown because it have been a great experience.

  4. mnickels says:

    I totally agree that the downtown houses should be kept. I think it is ridiculous that Bucknell wants to knock down over FIVE HOUSES on 6th street; that’s a lot of houses considering how small our “downtown” area is. If they knock down these houses and continue on, the university should not expect upcoming seniors to be happy about this or have a high satisfaction level. Living in a dorm all 4 years of college does not seem like a great option. And although there are gateways and mods, they are still university housing and are nowhere near the same experience as living in a house and paying your own bills and having a much, much larger space.

    • Jordi says:

      Another comment to make me unpopular….

      Why are you all in such a rush to live in sub-par rental housing and be gouged by local slum lords? You’ll have a whole life time of rent and/or mortgage payments. It is a hassle. Bucknell advertises itself as a 4 year residential experience. Why be in such a rush to move on? How much of your answer is _really_ about the feeling of freedom to consumer alcohol?

  5. knriggins says:

    I agree that living downtown is a great experience. It also helps get us students more involved in the community. Since I moved downtown, I’ve become much more aware and involved with the local community and the endless amount of activities and events they plan and attend. I can’t say I am strong opposed to them knocking down some of those houses, as long as they’d be willing to rebuild them. I walk by some of those houses (cough cough white picket) and they smell of beer and really bad man smell. Some of the houses really need a face lift. But I am strongly in favor of continuing the downtown tradition. Shouldn’t they be moving kids out of the mods first? The mods were deemed temporary housing when my parents went here…I love the Mods don’t get me wrong, just always thought they’d be the first to go.

  6. Alyssa Haglund says:

    (Picture wouldn’t work, click here for “map” of Bucknell Downtown)

    I completely agree with all of the positive aspects of downtown living, but as Kelly points out, there are also some disadvantages. These beloved houses are crap. I was told that the county would come inspect our house for violations in the beginning of the year. This has not happened yet and I bet it hasn’t happened for most of the other downtown houses. They are honestly dangerous. Yet, perhaps Lewisburg is doing this on purpose. After all, we are their #1 cash cow! I think that the houses need to be fixed up and continue the tradition. Long live downtown housing!

    • Jordi says:

      How are the downtown houses a cash cow? You mean due to property taxes? I don’t know if rental pays more property housing than ownership. If you think you put more dollars into the local economy than non-students would, you are mistaken. If the demolishing of the sixth st corridor happens, it could, potentially, raise surrounding property values AND improve quality of life for everyone else in the borough. I would need to look at numbers, but the net gain (utilitarian cost-benefit) could be higher than the current revenue stream (for the borough).

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  8. Jordi says:

    Why should seniors and underclassfolks be separated? That only seems to exacerbate less cohesion across the campus. Maybe some hard won wisdom from Seniors could rub off on them.

    The downtown housing is a blight on the community. The landlords and students often do not keep up the properties. Those houses would never be built today knowing what we know about flooding.

    A University’s physical space is constantly growing and changing. I have seen plaques in storage to dorms that are gone! Plaques that thank a donor for the gift! If they downtown life should be memorialized, perhaps University archives can collect memorabilia.

  9. Jordi says:

    Oh yeah, meant to post this, but got distracted by the comment thread.

    I was curious if student population is growing as Alex says. According to Robb Springall in admissions:
    “Jordi,
    Not true. Class target has been relatively constant in the last several years between 910 and 940. (This year 916, last year 929.)

    FWIW.

    Rob”

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