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The above email found my inbox on March 30th. The week prior, all freshmen were buzzing about the sophomore housing lottery—would we get a good timeslot? Do we prefer the full apartments of Homewood/Bradford or the suites of Charles Commons?

Well, that 6:40 timeslot solved those discussions: we knew were getting a double-double suite in McCoy, the least-liked of the sophomore housing options. According to some data released by the Housing department, 80% of students picked their housing before we did.

Unlucky, I know.

All that doom-and-gloom aside, McCoy is still an upgrade from the AMR II double I currently live in: air conditioning, 40 more square feet, a kitchenette, a private bathroom—all enviable amenities from where I stand now. It’s hard, nevertheless, to restrain from comparing the McCoy double to the Charles Commons single I had desired.

Anyway, here are some bits of advice for the Sophomore Housing Lottery.

  • If you’ve got your heart set on Charles Commons, consider splitting your group of 4 into two groups of 2. Every group of 2 had the option to choose a two-person suite in Charles Commons. Often times, there were even two 2-person suites right next to each other, so you’d essentially have your quad anyway.
  • Homewood quads are enticing, yes, but they will be filled up during the very first timeslot. I wouldn’t get my hopes up too much for a Homewood quad.
  • Groups of 3 are not allowed to pick quads in Charles Commons on the main day of selection. Essentially, this means that if you go in as a group of 3, you’re giving up on Charles Commons. That said, the triples in McCoy are definitely the nicest McCoy units, so it’s not all bad.

In retrospect, I wish my group would’ve split into two groups of 2—but my unluckiness in getting such a late timeslot was just that—unlucky. I’m sure I’d be singing a different tune if I’d gotten a 3:20 timeslot and we got that coveted Charles Commons quad.