- Associated Press - Thursday, June 2, 2016

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) - Missouri State University officials say it’s time to start exploring the feasibility of adding another residence hall on the Springfield campus, which has grown 18 of the past 20 years.

The university’s president, Clif Smart, told the Springfield News-Leader (https://sgfnow.co/25zzkqP ) that a study has begun. A recommendation could go before the Board of Governors as soon as October.

“We anticipate being up 400 or 500 students in the fall, over what was a record a year ago,” he said, referring to the more than 22,800 students enrolled last year. “We will be evaluating where we are in terms of our housing stock in the fall, after we see our final numbers.”

The university currently has nine traditional residence halls and two apartment-style complexes on campus, according to Gary Stewart, director of residence life, housing and dining services. The university expects them to be full near the beginning of the next school year in August.

The university’s residence halls have opened in “overflow” status for three years in a row as it has experienced a record-setting spike in first-year students. Residence halls receive this designation when the university’s 4,000 student beds are occupied and hundreds of additional students are seeking rooms.

Residence hall staff members have previously found other solutions, including transforming study spaces into rooms, placing extra beds in larger rooms and assigning roommates to students who typically bunk alone.

“We are going to continue to be crushed if we are going to continue to have this growth,” Stewart said. “It’s a great problem to have.”


Information from: Springfield News-Leader, https://www.news-leader.com

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