BEND, OR -- Amid the ongoing rental housing shortage in Bend, Central Oregon Community College is now accepting applications for its residence hall. COCC Director of Student Life Andrew Davis says with increasing rental rates around town, some students find it’s cheaper to live on campus, "For our students that live all year in a double year, they’re going to pay - depending on meal plan - somewhere between $10,000 -12,000. And to be able to do that for nine months of the year is pretty reasonable." That's much less than the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Bend.
Applications for Wickiup Hall for the fall opened earlier this month, "We actually have taken in almost 100 apps in the first two weeks, which is really exciting," says Davis, "I think people are eager to get in and get the process done. It’s a multi-step process. We have to help people make sure they understand all the details that go with that: what it’s going to cost them, the policies and expectations, what kind of room they’re looking for, match them with roommates."
He tells KBND News, "In most years, we end up taking in somewhere around 500 applications for 300 beds. Most of the time, we can accommodate. There’s people who apply and then decide to go somewhere else. We encourage anyone who reaches out to us to apply early so you can get all those details ironed out. It’s one less thing to worry about when you get to September."
Davis says help is also available through the nonprofit Thrive Central Oregon, "If students are struggling finding housing, they can make an appointment with Thrive. And they can do that just by emailing Thrive@COCC.edu."
It’s not unusual for a student to stay in the dorm for several years, especially given the shortage of rental housing around Bend, "As long as a student is enrolled in at least 12 credits, no matter how long their educational path is," says Davis, "If they’re earning multiple credentials and they want to keep living with us, we keep them."