“As a Muir student, I’m really digging the return to nature. But I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss running water,” admitted Bartlett.
Photo by Yuri Bukradhze
At the end of the 2020-21 academic school year, UCSD announced that they would not be reinstating the triple housing option that was eliminated due to COVID-19. This decision left many second-year students without on-campus housing, forcing them to look to the surrounding area for residencies. The large influx of students needing housing has led to a large swath of problems, including rent price gouging and homelessness. This has led to students demanding that UCSD respond to the issue or “literally just acknowledge that this is a problem.”
Breaking from their previous pattern of silence, UCSD sent out an email to all students today detailing their solution for the housing crisis. “We know that many of our students are having trouble finding housing, and our sympathies go out to those affected by the crisis. Unfortunately, the situation is completely beyond our control. While no housing options can be offered to students without housing contracts at this time, we are giving any student who requests a housing contract a UCSD-branded polyester tent. We hope that this will help students while they search for more permanent housing and allow them to continue their education at our campus.”
Many students are outraged by this decision. “You’re telling me they have money for brand new tents AND A WHOLE NEW COLLEGE but not the money to house students?” exclaimed one student in the UCSD ‘24 Discord server. When asked about whether their budget included the right allocations for student housing, UCSD admin responded by saying, “We felt it important that all of our students remember their Triton spirit, no matter what park or abandoned building they are living in.”
Some students are also saddened by the loss of the on-campus experience. “I know it’s not the most important thing,” said aerospace engineering major Barbara Bartlett, “but I really wish I got to experience living on-campus. I lost my whole freshman year to COVID-19, and was hoping that this year would be the year I get to live the idealized college life that was sold to me by Hollywood movies from a really young age. I want to go to parties, make friends with my random roommates, and buy weed from a shady dude who looks 40 years old yet still claims to live on campus. A tent isn’t really going to fix that. On second thought, I could hotbox the tent, but that only fixes one of my many problems. The least UCSD could do is give us a free gram.”
Amidst the ongoing student outcry to the school’s response, Chancellor Khosla gave a speech to try and abate the student body. “I would like you all to have faith in me and the school in making the correct decision,” said the Chancellor. “We know this is a difficult time and there is only one thing that I would like to make sure all students remember at this moment: tuition is due September 17th.”