A local college has offered students discounted rates for accommodation after they were forced to share rooms.
Shannon College of Hotel Management chose names from a hat to designate who had to share rooms after they exceeded their bookings for first year students seeking accommodation on campus.
Students were told on their first day of college that six boys and six girls would have to share rooms despite the college’s brochure stating each student who booked to stay in Castle Gardens would have their own room and en-suite.
Manzi Murenzi (18), a first year student from Kildare who had to share a room told the Limerick Voice he thought he was going to get his own room when he enrolled this summer.
“I was looking forward to having my own space. They said six girls and six boys have to share a room and if no one volunteered they’d pick names from a hat.
Between me and the lad I share with the fees are halved but if he moved out that means I’ve to pay full fees next semester,” explained Manzi.
Fees for first year student lodgings are set at €1,612 per semester. Utilities cost an extra €450.
On top of the contribution fees and student levy paid at all third level institutions, first years at Shannon College pay more than €670 for mandatory uniforms, a €400 meal charge and books cost €320 if bought first hand.
First year students are obliged to stay in the student village unless they live within 15 miles of the college, as stated on their website.
A spokesperson for Shannon College said that this is the first year that the college has had such a problem.
“On induction the Head of the college briefed parents that a minority of students would have to share a room which would be allocated on a lottery basis.
All students were accommodated and we recently secured additional houses to allow those who were sharing to now have their own room,” said the spokesperson.
However Murenzi said he was not offered an alternative living situation by the college.
Students at all seven universities have seen accommodation prices soar as the housing crisis worsens. In some cases, accommodation is more than €1,000 more expensive than last year.