We’ve slowly been gearing up for this coming housing season by covering the more colorful aspects of the housing process. Alas, the time draws nigh when you will be forced to finally make your housing choice official. Registration begins on February 29th and closes March 8th. Below, we’ve distilled a cursory overview of the entire housing process. Continue to ask questions in the comments, and feel free to share any nuggets of wisdom, upperclassmen.

  1. Registration (Feb. 29th) Everyone registers. You can either do Suite Selection with 1 to 7 other people or go straight to General Selection. If you opt for Suite Selection, you get to participate in General Selection with the same lottery number if you decide not to make a room choice during Suite Selection or if there is no suite available for your group size. Each group must have a person picked as the “coordinator” to act as a point person.
  2. Numbers (Mar. 21st): Lottery and priority numbers are assigned. Each group (Suite) or person (General) is assigned a priority number and a lottery number. Priority: 10 = rising sophomore, 20 = rising junior, 30 = rising senior (based on the semester you started at Columbia, not on your current standing). For a group, the group priority is the average of all the group members’ priorities (i.e. a group of 2 sophomores and 2 juniors would have a priority number of 15). Lottery numbers are assigned to each group in Suite Selection and each individual in General Selection at random from 1-3000. They are independent of priority numbers.
  3. Appointment Times (Mar. 26th): Your Suite Selection appointments times are then assigned first by priority number then by lottery number. So, ignoring mixed class groups, all seniors pick before all juniors, who pick before all sophomores. After you get your appointment times, you’re locked in and have to wait until the actual Suite Selection process. Read Bwog every day during Suite Selection for our updates about the remaining suites available.
  4. Regrouping (Apr. 2-10): At the end of their respective class-based priority appointment times (end of all 30-point groups, and then end of all 20-point groups), seniors and juniors may regroup with other class members to form new configurations with new randomly-assigned lottery numbers valid only for the regroup process. If a group still fails to select a suite, they then fall to General Selection with their original priority and lottery number. At the end of the 10-point priority appointment times, 10-point groups may split into group of two to pick into corridor doubles. Otherwise, they also drop to General Selection.
  5. General Selection (Apr. 18-30): After the hullabaloo of Suite Selection, General Selection appointment times are posted. General Selection is done online, not in person. How appropriate.
  6. The Dregs (May 1st): After selection is over, some sophomores will be left without a room. If  you did not get assigned a room, you go on a wait list and get whatever is left over after Housing makes final assignments. If you do not like your room selection, you may apply for summer transfer. The people who apply for summer transfer get to pick again in reverse-Lottery number order.