VSU new housing annexes met with mixed reactions on move-in day

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Posted at 5:29 PM, Aug 21, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-21 17:36:38-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Some Virginia State University students found out Monday morning that along with growth - comes growing pains.

Students at the university began moving into their fall campus housing assignments and were found unpacking their cars and arranging their dorm rooms with some help from their parents.

VSU junior Diamond Jones, says her third year at the university is starting off a little different from the previous two.

"Today is move-in day, is kind of different, I'm moving into the new annexes they built," Jones said.

Jones says she isn't completely sold on the idea of living in the new annexes.

"I would think they would build more apartments, more buildings and stuff instead of trailers," Jones said.

Junior Courtney Nicholson says the key is that the modular unit is new, and the best part is the location.

"I like it, it's really cool. I'm still on campus, as long as I'm on campus, I'm ok,"Nicholson said.

Virginia State University continues to see record growth, and with that growth comes growing pains.

"It is growth and growth is good but along with growth, we know that there can be some challenges," VSU VP of Communications Gwen Williams-Dandridge said.

One challenge is the school trying to accomodate every student that wants to attend school at the Chesterfield County campus.

"It's not our goal to say no. Our goal is to find a way to say to any student who wants to come here," Williams-Dandridge said.

And with this goal comes a lot of creativity when it comes to housing.

"We're calling them our 'annexes' because they are basically temporary dorm rooms," Williams-Dandridge said.

There are currently three annexes on campus, which equals a total of ten units being used as dorms.

Along with the modular units, some students are being housed at a hotel in Chester, as well as apartment complexes in Ettrick, and in the city of Petersburg.

The growth in part, the University says, is due to simple economics.

"We still remain one of the most affordable four-year universities in the Commonwealth of Virginia," Williams-Dandridge said.

There are tentative plans for a new dormitory to be built in the next few years.

The number of students aren't the only things growing on campus, there are several construction projects going on as well - including the largest building to be built on campus.

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