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A lesson in supply & demand

Overflow housing at Travelodge gives Carleton froshes...

Ottawa Sun - September 1, 2002
By Nelly Elayoubi


Vans, pickup trucks and 4x4s filled Carleton University's parking lot yesterday, and boxes, suitcases, pillows and blankets lined the sidewalks as first-year students took up residence.

Student facilitators with painted faces, blow horns, and whistles welcomed students and their parents, who were kept busy unloading and unpacking yesterday.

A barbecue and welcome concert featuring Fully Down, a former Carleton residence band, were some of the activities planned for the students yesterday.

"The feeling right now is there are so many questions on their minds and many concerns. They're nervous and getting homesick," said Doug Hogg, Orientation Sponsorship and Shinerama Co-ordinator.

Meanwhile, some first-year students were moving in at the Travelodge on Carling Ave.-- overflow accommodation because demand for campus residences exceeded the supply.


HOTEL CARLETON

This year, for the first time, Carleton University has residence-style accommodation at the hotel for up to 114 students. By yesterday, 50 had registered, with 40 more expected today.

"Typically, the answer for students who can't be accommodated in residence, the answer was to look for accommodation of any kind -- Ottawa apartments, rooms in houses," said David Sterritt, director of housing.

Shuttle buses between the hotel and Orientation Week activities are available and there will be on-site university staff.

"It's like the experience you have in residence but not on campus," Sterritt said.

Accommodation at the Travelodge is available until April, or until the students find alternative accommodation arrangements.

"As long as there's a significant number of people here, we're not going to push them on the streets," Sterritt said.

Sterritt said a higher demand for accommodation at this time of year is to be expected, given the number of higher education institutes, like Carleton, the University of Ottawa, Algonquin College and La Cite Collegiale, in the area.

"There's always the same anxiety experienced over what arrangements will be made for them," Sterritt said.

Collin Parkinson was one of many nervous dads on campus yesterday as he said goodbye to his only child, Nicole Parkinson, 18, on campus. After a 15-hour drive from Thunder Bay, he said he would miss his daughter.

"It's been the two of us for a while, my wife passed away four years ago so we're very close," Collin said.

"I'm a little bit nervous," admitted Nicole, who will be studying integrated science.

"It hasn't hit me yet that I've left home."

Carrying her hockey skates while her parents unloaded the van, Allison MacDonald, 18, from Dartmouth, N.S., said she planned to join sports teams to meet people.

"I know a few people from my high school but we're not that close. I love sports so I'm going to join teams to make friends," said MacDonald, who will be studying science.

Orientation Week officially kicks off today with such activities as a beach volleyball tourney at Mooney's Bay, a concert featuring Bif Naked, and Shinerama -- a fun fundraiser for cystic fibrosis.


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