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After sudden coronavirus evictions, universities demand students pay to get their stuff back

Dave_BerryDave_Berry CC Admissions Expert 511 replies3012 threads CC Admissions Expert
"No prior notice before movers start packing up their stuff

If you were tempted to feel sympathy for the plight of higher education during the COVID-19 pandemic, this will help you resist temptation.

Some universities are not only packing up students’ belongings without telling them first, but demanding that students pay them to get their own stuff back following short-notice evictions that were portrayed as temporary, Inside Higher Ed reports.

University of Virginia students will have to pay $65-100 if they want to retrieve their own belongings from a storage site before the state’s June 10 stay-at-home order expires. Those who can’t pick them up physically because of other government restrictions on their movement will also be charged shipping:

Several students, including [recent Student Council president Ellie] Brasacchio, who does not live in one of the affected residence halls, attempted to move out weeks ago, but the office of housing and residential life had changed locks and access codes to the buildings, she said." ...



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Replies to: After sudden coronavirus evictions, universities demand students pay to get their stuff back

  • sdl0625sdl0625 931 replies13 threads Member
    Yeah, we are part of the GWU mess. There is even more to it, that they are throwing away items that belong to students.
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  • TS0104TS0104 1371 replies31 threads Senior Member
    It's clear that this is a student written article. I suspect there is more to the story, from the schools' perspectives, like in terms of what information was sent out and when. While I absolutely sympathize with students whose stuff is stuck in limbo, and with paying fees to obtain it, I can also sympathize with colleges trying their best to follow state and local laws and orders, and do their best to prevent virus spread by not allowing access to campuses and rooms. This has all been a very crazy, unplannable, uncertain time and hard decisions had to be made quickly, with no perfect solutions. (Now, throwing away seems unexcusable, but I don't have any info on that).

    FWIW, my kids don't attend any of the schools in this thread or article and both of them have stuff stuck at college. My D17's stuff is stuck in her off campus apt where I will have to pay to have it moved out remotely, my S19's stuff is stuck in his dorm room (his school had also not went permanently online at the beginning of spring break) with no foreseeable plan to get it out due to state orders. His school has made all books available online for free and made exceptions for access, but it is still against stay at home orders and quarantine travel rules to go and move either of them out.
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  • 1NJParent1NJParent 2251 replies37 threads Senior Member
    ^Living off campus has its own, and likely more costly, problems. You generally couldn't get a refund when the college shut down on short notice, as you can living in a dorm. With uncertainty for the fall term, and perhaps even beyond, would you sign up for a new lease?
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  • sdl0625sdl0625 931 replies13 threads Member
    Many schools at the beginning gave students a window to come get their stuff. GW kicked their students off right when spring break began and never gave a chance for anyone to get their stuff. They even had an opportunity before the stay in place directives took place to offer those who was close enough to come and get retrieve items. Now they are packing up the dorms, and only sending items such as passports to students, or if they need books, sending those at the students cost. Also they are throwing away items and not compensating . they are not offering, even at the students expense , to ship other items. They will not allow any students that remained to even retrieve items for another student from an empty dorm. Also the way the movers have been working has not been ideal. My D also has repeatedly asked to see what insurance is on her items and has yet to get any documentation. At this point we are all having to shelter in place and lives matter, but the school doesnt seem to be caring about the students and their possessions either. Right now it would been nice to only pack for those students who had no intentions of coming back for their items. Will see what happens in a month or two when we might be able to retrieve our stuff.
    Bottom line, would have been nice to leave items until it was safe if not given an opportunity before to get their stuff, or compensate for items being trashed since students had no say. It is what it is though.
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  • 1NJParent1NJParent 2251 replies37 threads Senior Member
    edited April 9
    ^Responses to COVID-19 seem to vary significantly from college to college. Those who feel not being treated fairly should post their stories in college-specific forums, for two reasons:
    1) Colleges don't like bad publicity and they may provide remedies to the affected students.
    2) Future students, including those still deciding whether to attend specific colleges in the current season, could use this information to make their more informed decisions.
    edited April 9
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