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Many of us have (or currently are) experiencing life in the residence halls. From legendary ghost stories whispered to new generations of freshmen to the much talked about “space ship rooms” of Lone Mountain, the importance and impact of the dorm experience is clear: they provide a fun, safe place to live while away at school—a place to make memories from experiencing new things.

But how does one get placed in the “perfect dormitory” to ensure such a great experience? Unfortunately, there is no perfect formula; but thanks to USFrooms, powered by a program called StarRez, and the hardworking staff at the Office of Residence Life, we’re pretty close to finding one.

USFrooms is the online housing application many of you are already familiar with. It is finishing its second year at USF and has helped the housing process immensely. As the director of Residence Life Steve Nygaard put it, USFrooms is the “natural evolution of where students are.” As students of the new millennium, we do virtually everything online, including homework, watching TV or movies, and talking to our friends and family. Why not bring the housing application system there, too?

USFrooms provides a greater breadth of services in a more efficient way. Like the social networking sites we’ve all come to know so well, USFrooms allows you to create a profile account. With this, you can search for roommates and apply for a specific room/res hall (except for freshmen). With the old process, it took about two hours and students had less control of where they ended up or who their roommate was. Now, you can apply for on-campus housing in around five minutes! USFrooms helps the Office of Residence Life department manage dorm occupancy as well as student’s meal plans and Dons Dollars.

As with every program, we learn more and more about it each year and through that knowledge USFrooms is evolving to better suit the needs of the USF community—and people are noticing! Many first years said they appreciated the fact that they got answers immediately.

One of the latest additions is the employment module. With over 200 jobs, the office of Residence Life is one of the largest student employers on campus. From front desk employees to RAs to student assistants, there is always a lot of activity in the res halls. Now, USFrooms offers itself as a forum for students to apply and manage their employment with the office of Residence Life.

Living in the dorms is an important part of the college experience and it’s never been easier to do so. Visit http://www.usfca.edu/Residence_Life/Apply/ to find out more about USFrooms today!

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