Let's talk--Open office hours this Friday

To: UCSC Students

From: Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor Alison Galloway

Welcome to spring quarter. I hope the time between finals and the first day of classes was restful and restorative. 

I want to make sure you know that I'll be hosting open office hours in Quarry Plaza this Friday afternoon from 3 to 4:30. This is an informal opportunity for you to stop by, ask questions, and let me know what's on your mind. 

One topic that's come to my attention recently is Family Student Housing. For those of you who can't make it on Friday, let me clarify a few things in the wake of some misinformation that's circulating around campus.

Family Student Housing (FSH) is a vital part of our campus infrastructure, and UCSC's commitment to housing families and couples is unwavering. However, our current FSH units are nearing the end of their structural life. While some might argue that we try to extend their useful existence through remodeling and renovation, at some point the investment in repairs exceeds the value of the units. When that happens, it is best to replace the units with the needs of today’s families, energy efficiency, accessibility and community spaces in mind.  The campus is in the very early stages of developing a long-term plan to do so.

As always, the cost of new housing is funded as part of our campuswide housing program. When we built apartments, for example, at Cowell, Stevenson, and Porter Colleges several years ago, the students who subsequently moved in did not foot the bill alone for those new buildings. Similarly, when the debt for older campus housing is retired, the entire housing program — and the residents who support it — benefits. Keeping future rate increases as low as possible will be a top priority as we discuss the renewal of housing for student families.

There are many other topics to discuss on Friday, including UC's ongoing budget challenges and their impacts on you. In the end, my conversations with students make me a better advocate for you. If you can't make it on Friday, please share your thoughts by writing me at cpevc@ucsc.edu. 

Thank you very much for your time.