Housing reaffirms off-campus policy
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
By Lindsay Blaze
Oklahoma Christian University looks to reiterate the idea of being a
residential campus and having students meet certain requirements in order to
live off campus.
Some students say they can find cheaper living off campus, but the
administration feels that re-affirming of the housing policy has nothing to do
with the price of tuition at Oklahoma Christian.
"I think there are some people out there that think they will be living
off campus next year and they need to understand from us that the Board of
Trustees has this as a policy that we are a residential campus and they have
reiterated that to me that we need to maintain that," Arter said.
Four years ago Oklahoma Christian began to re-structure their freshmen dorms.
Students were moved from the dorms to the apartments. Some of these apartments
had only two beds and four people living there. This was when the requirements
for living off campus were changed.
"I was partly allowed to live off campus for financial reasons, but I also
know there were going to be situations where two students were sharing one
bedroom apartments. I also think the cramped living arrangements had something
to do with it," senior Marcus Smith said.
Due to this change, certain students feel they benefited by being able to live
"We were packing people in over there, we changed the requirements to get
people off campus to ease the pain," Arter said.
Oklahoma Christian teaches students inside the classrooms as well as outside of
the classrooms. The housing at Oklahoma Christian allows for this teaching to
go on. The relationships that are built come from within the dorms and
apartments, Arter said.
"I benefited a lot from living on campus. Many people did not like curfew,
but my best memories came from being locked in with all your friends,"
junior Jessica Clay said.
Clay said that living in the dorms helped to build community within the class
by getting to know most all of the girls.
"Obviously, Oklahoma Christian is a residential campus and we feel like
there are several things that make Oklahoma Christian a distinctive university,
on of those is that we live in a learning community," Arter said.
Years ago, living on campus was a requirement. The area around the university
was not built up and students stayed on campus in order to attend school daily.
But over the last 20 years, more and more houses and apartments have been
developed giving students more opportunities to live off campus and remain
close enough for a short commute.
"It is cheaper to live off campus, what OC charges is ridiculous. By
living off campus I get more space for what I am paying for," senior
Shiloh Martin said.
Still Oklahoma Christian remains a residential campus.
"Without the residential experience, you are not getting the full
experience of Oklahoma Christian, and we really do feel like it is part of the
experience," Arter said.
For some students the convenience outweighs the cons of living on campus.
"I enjoy living on campus. We only have one car and my husband has to go
to work, so it is nice to be able to walk to class," senior Sara Denton
said. "It is less expensive because we don't have to pay utilities
Experiences with students come mostly from the freshmen dorms like Gunn
Henderson, Warlick Hall, Wilson and Reba Davidson. It is where college begins
for most Oklahoma Christian students.
"We hear people talking about their experience of living in Gunn Henderson
together and there are so many memories and so many things that come from that,
best friends that you never would have known before and so there is some value
in having similar or like experiences and I think that is one of the things we're
not willing to give up on," Arter said.
For students living in the dorms, many rules had to be followed. Some students
feel the rules made for a fun environment.
"I enjoyed living in the dorms because you would know that all your
friends were in the dorm after curfew, so it was like a big slumber party,"
senior Katie Bowles said.
Requirements to live off campus in the fall of 2008 include if a student is
married, if a student is part time, if a student lives with parents, if a
student is 23 years of age or older and if a student has 124 credit hours.
Oklahoma Christian is looking to be competitive with the cost of housing as
compared to other schools, and plans to spread the word about the policy now so
it does not come as a surprise for students this coming fall.