In the weeks since the University’s plan for reopening campus in the fall was announced, students have responded with a variety of concerns about their safety and health. For some, the uncertainty posed by the pandemic and shifting plans means they’re left searching for housing and negotiating current leases.
Some off-campus housing leases in Chapel Hill don’t begin until after the updated first day of class on Aug. 10, which is eight days before the originally planned start date. The non-traditional shortened semester with various proposed safety measures — such as masks and socially distanced classrooms and dining halls — is leading some students to look for subleasers.
Junior Sally Ngo, who currently has a lease for next year at Union Chapel Hill Apartments, is looking to find a subleaser due to financial concerns. She plans to live in Cary with her family and commute to class, but is worried about making the 35-minute drive every day.
“I had planned my semester as if I would be on campus. So I signed up for all 9 a.m.'s and then my classes would end around noon, but I think if I were to commute I would have to wake up really early,” she said. “It's also really hard to find someone to sublease to, especially because everybody's budget is not $1,200-a-month kind of budget.”
In an email statement, UNC Media Relations said the University will offer classes in a variety of formats to help meet the needs of individual students. The University will also be in touch with enrolling students in June with more information regarding class formats.