Q: What happens when someone in your suite graduates early/goes abroad (i.e. you go into an EC suite with someone who graduates in the fall) and you have an open bed in a double in the spring? Is housing likely to stick a random in with you, or is it likely for you to get a dingle for the rest of the year?

What has been the historical trend for kids based on word of mouth? Do you guys know anyone who has been in this situation and how the situation panned out?

A: We have some good news, and some bad news. The good is that you have the option to request a specific student to fill the space (another friend returning from a Fall semester abroad, for example), and your request will be prioritized. The bad is that Housing will likely fill the space even if you don’t request someone, which means you could get stuck with a random roommate.

“They can definitely tell us that they want a specific student who is returning to fill the space,” says Joyce Jackson, Executive Director of Housing. There’s no set order in which abandoned spots are filled, adds Jackson—that is, Housing doesn’t first fill abandoned rooms of a certain type or in a certain dorm. In layman’s terms, an opening in a Ruggles double is just as likely to be filled as an abandoned Broadway single.

In terms of word of mouth, Bwog can attest to having seen several possible outcomes. In one, a suite of five lost two suitemates to early graduation, and the spots were never filled. In another, a student who’d been abroad in the Fall came back and filled the spot of a suitemate leaving for a Spring semester abroad. In the third, three visiting students (in exchange programs) were placed by Housing to fill spots in a suite that lost three students to study abroad programs for the Spring, because the remaining suitemates didn’t request anyone specific to fill the spots.

Clearly, it’s not an exact science. Your best bet is to find a replacement for the student leaving, and send your request to Housing as early as possible.