Princeton Sophomores Live in Mobile Homes

Chalk this up for another reason why you chose Harvard over Princeton: the possibility of living in a mobile home for a year.

This year, Princeton has been forced for the first time to rent 10 mobile homes from a local company in order to house overflow students.

The university took this measure because more students than expected accepted spots in the class of 1999.

The Admissions Office last spring anticipated that 56 to 57 percent of admitted students would choose to matriculate this fall, but 60 percent of those admitted decided to enroll, according to the Princeton Weekly Bulletin.

The higher-than-expected matriculation rate forced Princeton to look for extra housing to accommodate approximately 70 overflow first-year students.


As the fall semester rapidly approached, Princeton housing officials over the summer contacted After Disaster, a local company that rents prefabricated residential units.

The company delivered the units to Princeton's Poe Court in mid-August, and students moved into the yellow trailers September 1, according to the Weekly Bulletin.

The sophomores who volunteered to live in the units were enticed by the many amenities the trailers provide.

Each unit contains air conditioning, two bedrooms, one and a half bathrooms, a furnished living room area, a dining area and a kitchen for four students. The units are all wired to the Internet.

Students were also given financial incentive to move into the 55" by 12" units. Those who chose the trailers were offered a $1,000 discount off the $2,790 annual housing fees, according to an article in the Wall Street Journal.

Poe Court residents, although initially skeptical of the idea, now say they could not be happier with their decision to spend sophomore year in the plain but comparatively luxurious trailers.

"They are awesome," and sophomore resident Kristin Henderson, who lives with three other classmates. "All of my friends are totally jealous now"

And non-residents, who initially scoffed at the idea of trailer dorms in the must of their Gothie wonderland, are now regretting their decision to remain in the traditional dorms.

"People who were at first aghast at the idea of mobile trailers are now kind of disappointed that they did not take up the ofter," said first year student David Ascher. "[The trailers] are not as garish as they are portrayed."

Harvard housing officials said yesterday that a overflow situation like Princeton's would be "highly unlikely" to occur here.

"There are so many cancellations, so many people leaving for a year, and plus we have overflow housing in. Apley Court," said Jennifer Wood, assistant to the housing officer. "So no mobile homes here."

Wood added that in the remote possibility that a housing crunch occurred, a decision on a remedy would not be made at the housing office, but by Associate Dean of the College Thomas A. Dingman '67