Hays Dozens of students at Fort Hays State University will be housed in a motel miles from campus this fall because of a late boost in enrollment and a delay in replacing a former dormitory.
The last-minute enrollment hike, combined with a delay in replacing a dormitory forced university officials to put about 80 students and two resident assistants in a Motel 6 located about four miles from campus, The Hays Daily News reported Thursday.
Brian Faust, FHSU's residential life director, said the motel was the university's last option. He said the university considered redesigning and remodeling buildings so they could turn residence hall lounges into rooms and covert double-rooms to triple-rooms.
But Faust said the amount of available space and fire code requirements made that impossible.
"We wanted to keep everyone on campus if we had that option," Faust said. "We tried literally everything to make it work."
Male upperclassmen were chosen to be moved to the hotel first because freshmen are required to live on campus.
University officials said that when dorm rooms become available students in the motel will be able to move back on-campus. While it's possible the students will be living in the motel for the entire fall semester, Shana Meyer, vice president of student affairs, said she expects those students to receive on-campus housing by the beginning of the spring semester.
Shuttles to campus will be provided from 6:45 a.m. until 7:15 p.m. The motel provides towels, parking and a weekly maid service for the rooms, and also has a swimming pool.
Students were given the option to terminate their residential life contract and find off-campus housing, but many students didn't have enough time to search.
Sophomore Dylan Ellis said he had two options.
"I could cancel my contract and attempt to find a house or live in the Motel 6. I had to move in soon, so I didn't get much of an option," Ellis said. "I had to live at the Motel 6."