- Section 1: Project Information & Community Engagement
- Section 2: Alternative On-Campus Housing Options
- Section 3: East Campus Community Priorities
- Section 4: Tier Pricing & Financial Aid
- Section 5: Miscellaneous Items & Contact Information
SECTION 1: PROJECT INFORMATION & COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT
When will East Campus be renovated?
- East Campus is scheduled to go offline after Commencement 2023 and will be closed for a two-year renovation. East Campus is expected to fully reopen for the Fall 2025 term.
Do all East Campus residents have to move out during the construction period?
- Yes. Residents will need to move out when the parallels close after Commencement 2023 during the standard move-out dates for undergraduates. Housing & Residential Services (HRS) will work with the heads of house, associate heads of house, area director and Graduate Resident Advisors (GRAs) to facilitate the timing of house team moves in June.
What is the scope of the renovation?
- The renovation includes an extensive infrastructure and building systems update with enhancements to finishes and spaces to position the residence hall for the next 100 years. This includes a thoughtful organization of the halls, a new community kitchen, upgrades to the Talbot Lounge, new music and fitness rooms, a reimagined makerspace with direct courtyard access, along with significant accessibility and sustainability improvements.
How have East Campus residents been involved in the renovation planning process?
- The Division of Student Life (DSL) has worked extensively with East Campus leadership to assemble a Transition Team, which includes student residents, house team members and DSL staff. The group continues to identify student and community needs, surface renewal-related issues and develop strategies to address them. The Transition Team has also been actively working with the project architects to provide input on the student life program elements of the renovation design, and working through the logistics of relocation and communicating with key stakeholders in East Campus.
The broader East Campus community has also engaged in nine community workshops to provide the project team and the architects with key input to help inform the project’s overall design. Two resident-led tours of East Campus and the Fall 2022 REX build also provided the project team and architects with a first-hand look at the unique needs of the community.
East Campus is a unique place with a rich history and a very engaged community. How is MIT working to honor that through the renovation?
- Many efforts are underway to honor the unique culture that has been the hallmark of East Campus over the decades. We want to continue traditions while also leveraging this opportunity to enhance the physical environment to support students’ needs and evolving culture in the future. The project architects have engaged with residents throughout the process to get perspectives on the design and execution of the renovation. In fact, the architects have frequently remarked upon the level of passion and involvement students have demonstrated - it is like nothing they have seen before on other campuses. All ten individual floor communities will be preserved through this renovation project, as well as East Campus’ maker and cook-for-yourself cultures, and community spaces will be enhanced and divided between the two parallels as shared amenities for all residents. The East Campus Transition Team continues to share community priorities with the project team and architects.
Will East Campus remain a cook-for-yourself community?
- Yes. East Campus will remain a cook-for-yourself community. DSL understands and values the importance of the cook-for-yourself culture within East Campus. The renovation includes plans to create a new community kitchen for the benefit of all residents, and to make significant upgrades to all of the hall kitchens.
What percentage of single and double rooms will exist in the renovated East Campus?
SECTION 2: ALTERNATIVE ON-CAMPUS HOUSING OPTIONS
What alternative on-campus housing options are available to East Campus residents during the renovation period?
- East Campus residents may preference any of the other 10 on-campus residential communities (see housing grid, please note New House includes all cultural houses). DSL will make every effort to offer students housing options that best match their preferences. The goal is to provide positive and supportive living experiences for all students, where each student feels welcomed in their new residence and is eager to participate fully in the life of the house in which they live during the renewal period. At the same time, staff, space and resources will be in place to support EC community continuity throughout the renovation period. This transition also offers EC students the opportunity to make new friends, and to contribute to other communities as they perpetuate their own.
Will East Campus residents be able to preference alternative on-campus housing options as part of a group?
- Yes. The Building Switch process will be expanded to allow for groups of up to 8 East Campus residents to transfer together. This process was previously developed with DormCon and the Burton Conner Transition Team leading up to that community’s 2020-2022 renovation project. Two groups of 8 may also choose to link together and request to be placed in the same building together as space allows. Room Assignment Chairs (RACs) will make room assignments according to their in-house processes, and HRS cannot guarantee that all group members of a group will be able to live on the same floor as the spaces may not be available.
When will East Campus residents preference alternative housing options?
- East Campus residents will participate in the annual Housing Intent and Building Switch processes between Wednesday, February 15 and Wednesday, March 8, 2023. Building preferences shared by East Campus residents will receive priority as part of the Building Switch process.
Will current EC residents be guaranteed an assignment in East Campus when the residence hall reopens?
- In alignment with the New House and Burton Conner renewal projects, students who lived in East Campus during Spring 2023 and either continue to live on campus or chose to move off campus during the renewal project will be guaranteed housing in East Campus when it reopens, as long as they are still eligible for undergraduate on-campus housing (i.e. are within their eight semesters of guaranteed housing and have not taken a leave of absence between Spring 2023 and the reopening of East Campus).
If an East Campus student resident takes a leave or separates from the Institute between Spring 2023 and the reopening of East Campus in Fall 2025, they will need to apply for housing through the waitlist process, which is subject to availability (current policy). If an East Campus student (who took a leave) successfully returns to on-campus housing by Spring 2025 through the waitlist process, they will receive priority to live in East Campus when it reopens in Fall 2025.
SECTION 3: EAST CAMPUS COMMUNITY PRIORITIES
Will resident cat owners be able to relocate their cat to another on-campus residence hall?
- DSL recognizes the importance of cats for those who have them. DSL staff have developed a proposed policy as a special exception to the campus Pet Policy to allow for East Campus cat owners to relocate their cats to another on-campus residence halls. Please see the relevant section of the East Campus Renovation Project website for complete details.
Are there specialized resources available for East Campus residents who identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community?
- Yes. A subcommittee within the East Campus Transition Team is focusing specifically on supporting the East Campus LGBTQ+ community. MIT also offers various resources through LGBTQ+ Services, and dedicated on-campus spaces such as the Rainbow Lounge on the Second Floor of Walker Memorial (50-250) for programming available to East Campus residents and all members of the MIT community.
Will storage assistance be available for East Campus residents?
- Yes. A one-time storage benefit will be available to eligible East Campus residents to accommodate storage needs as they transition out of East Campus to other residence halls where personal storage is not provided. Beginning as soon as the 2023 Independent Activities Period (IAP), East Campus residents who need to store non-furniture items may utilize this benefit. This service will cover Summer 2023 storage as well as spring semester storage if a resident will not live on campus during the spring semester. The program will offer $200 (approximately four large boxes) toward storage with MIT’s preferred storage vendor, Piece by Piece Moving & Storage. Additional details regarding this program are available on the storage section of this webpage.
Will there be a dedicated community space for East Campus residents during the renovation period?
- Yes. In collaboration with the East Campus Transition Team, staff from DSL are working to develop a dedicated community space for East Campus residents during the two-year renovation period. While specific details are still under development, additional information, including the specific location and availability, will be shared with the East Campus community during the Spring 2023 semester.
When the renovation is complete, will murals be allowed within East Campus?
- Creative expression is an important facet of campus life at MIT. Principles regarding student artwork in residential buildings were developed by an Undergraduate Housing Working Group in 2018–2019 with the goals of supporting opportunities for student artmaking, ensuring that art is curated, and aligning these activities with priorities for effective stewardship of the building. Artwork will be permitted on panels in locations that were designated for displays as part of the East Campus architectural design process. The project architects are keenly aware of the importance of displaying community artwork and have incorporated these elements into the project design in collaboration with the East Campus Transition Team.
Will there be an East Campus liaison to help maintain community continuity during the renovation period?
- Yes. DSL is currently developing a plan, in collaboration with the East Campus Transition Team, to establish a Community Liaison (CL) position that will support East Campus residents and assist with community-building programming. Additional information about the CL will be shared with the East Campus community during the Spring 2023 semester.
SECTION 4: TIER PRICING & FINANCIAL AID
Will East Campus change to Tier 1 pricing after the renovation?
- Yes. In the past, when other residence halls have undergone major infrastructure and building system renovations, or new ones have been constructed, rates have been set at Tier 1 pricing.
Will the change to Tier 1 status impact residents’ financial aid?
- Financial aid packages are calculated based on the double room rate in a Tier 1 building and enrollment in the most comprehensive meal plan. Financial aid does not change based on the housing or meal plan chosen, or if you choose to live off campus. We know that housing costs may be top of mind for many East Campus residents, whether they decide to continue living on campus or move off campus during the renovation period. Please know that staff from Student Financial Services are available to answer any financial-related questions that East Campus community members may have. MIT also offers additional resources to assist students accessed via the DoingWell website, including short-term emergency funding to help students with unforeseen essential expenses or financial hardships.
Can returning East Campus residents from the Class of 2026 be “grandfathered” so they don’t have to pay Tier 1 rates?
- No. Grandfathering rates presents many complications and questions about fairness for all residents in large part because housing rates are set to reflect the condition of the building.
SECTION 5: MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS & CONTACT INFORMATION
Which residence hall will be renewed after East Campus?
- No decisions about the next renewal project have been made yet.
Where can questions about the East Campus renovation be directed?