Watson: the whole story

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Chance Shelton

Watson Hall/Pods are known here at Georgia Southern for giving students the “real” college experience: community bathrooms and a box for a room shared by two people.

To some, Watson is more than just a box with amazing Wi-Fi, it is the cheapest and best option with exceptional location. However, in the eyes of the university, Watson represents the history and progression of our great university, but is still disposable if needed.

Ryan Hines, assistant director of Occupancy and Technology Services, cleared up the rumors and speculation about the possibility of Watson closing, reveling that Watson’s usage varies by situation and is based on the overall budget.

Even though Watson may be the oldest dormitory on campus and actually makes a profit for the university, its usage is not necessarily needed because of other housing options around our expanding campus.

“Since opening Freedom’s Landing, we have typically opened with, or quickly melted to, enough vacancies that could make it possible to close Watson Hall,” Hines said.

Hines said that Watson, in its entirety, is not highly demanded, and with spaces in other housing options it would be the easiest to close down if it was completely necessary.

Hines said that this past summer the university had expected Watson to be open for the incoming fall students since some students had already applied for its housing. However, he noted that by mid-summer the numbers did not look as promising as before and they planned on closing it for this coming fall semester, but in a game of back-and-forth with the university, ended up keeping it open. This all happened because students had already been assigned to rooms within the dormitory.

“We held our commitment in placing individuals there,” Hines said.

In all, Watson’s continuous usage will come down to demand and GSU will take the appropriate actions needed to accommodate that.