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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Housing Lottery: by the numbers

Published: March 19, 2010
Section: News

PHOTO BY Andrew Rauner/The Hoot

Due to logistical changes by which students can live in newly renovationed Charles River Appartments, this years housing lottery was as unpredictable as ever. Here’s a roundup of how it went:


Lottery numbers did not necessarily dictate the order in which students chose their rooms. This year’s system allowed students whose first choice was not the most popular for their year to circumvent the line and choose their housing before other students who were trying to receive the more popular housing. Because of this, students waiting for the more popular housing choice could be left without choice spots because less popular housing was already filled with students who had worse numbers then theirs.

“We’ve refined it from year to year and we’ll find out how to make it go more smoothly as a process,”Director of Community Living Jeremy Leiferman, said.


Students studying abroad next year were able to choose between rooms in the Village, where this year’s study abroad students lived, and four suites in Ziv Quad, a new option for this year.


For sophomores, the option of living in Village A, which was new this year, went as quickly as the traditionally popular Rosenthal Quad. By lottery number 215 only rooms in Castle and East Quads remained available. One completely new option for sophomore room selection this year was that an entire floor of East was set aside for a living-learning community. Students applied to these communities before housing selection and did not have to participate in selection as theywere chosen to live in these places based on the information in their application before lottery numbers were dealt.


In an anomaly from tradition, the student with 1,001 (the equivalent of number one for upperclassmen) chose a Charles River suite.  The choice can perhaps be attributed to the announcement last month that the quad will be renovated for the 2010-2011 academic year. Still, suites in Ridgewood Quad were gone by number 56. All of Ridgewood A was also made into a senior-only living-learning community this year.  As for sophomores, students in this community had their housing secured before regular room selection, and left the rest of their peers with fewer options.

Living-learning communities also decreased the options in Ziv Quad with an entire floor (three suites) of one building being set aside for a junior-only community.

The first night of housing for upperclassmen ended at number 1,170. At that time, there were 14 suites up for grabs in Ziv Quad, four six-person Mods available and the majority of Charles River Apartments.

Ziv suites were gone shortly after lottery number 1,250.  At number 1,660 only singles in Ziv and Charles River were left. At number 1,727 only singles in Charles River were available. The waitlist for juniors and seniors–who are not guaranteed housing–began at number 1,750 the waitlist. Lottery numbers went through 2,300.

“Brandeis just has to do better,” Minority Senator JV Souffant ’13 said.