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Tuesday, June 07, 2011

SU Ranked High in EBI Survey

SALISBURY, MD---Students ranked Salisbury University No. 1 in the nation for campus housing quality when compared to cost, according to results of a recent Educational Benchmarking, Inc. survey.

The survey asked thousands of students at 282 colleges and universities throughout the United States, including more than 1,600 at SU, to rate their campus housing experiences in 87 areas. SU ranked in the top 10 in eight “Living on campus enhanced your ability to …” categories, including:

  • Manage your time more effectively (No. 2);
  • Solve your own problems (No. 2);
  • Understand the consequences of drug abuse (No. 2);
  • Study more effectively (No. 3);
  • Improve your communication skills (No. 4);
  • Resolve conflict (No. 5);
  • Understand the consequences of alcohol use and abuse (No. 5); and
  • Improve interpersonal relationships (No. 9).

In addition, SU ranked No. 2 in the “Satisfaction with variety of meal plan” and “Satisfaction with value of dining plan” categories. Salisbury was No. 7 in “Living on campus fulfilled your expectations” and “Benefitted from interactions with residents who are different than you.” The University also ranked No. 9 in “Living on campus enhanced your ability to improve interpersonal relationships.”

“We are excited that SU placed in the top 10 in 14 out of the 87 survey categories,” said Dane Foust, interim vice president of student affairs. “This is valuable student feedback that we will use in planning for the future, and we are delighted that students recognize the excellence that can be found in the housing and food programs.”

SU also ranked high in categories including “To what degree have you interacted with residents who are different than you?” and “Are you satisfied with your overall experience on this campus?” among others.

The survey was taken at a time when SU housing has seen tremendous change and growth. Recently, three of the University’s “Quad” residence halls, the oldest on campus still used for student housing today, underwent major renovations. Those halls now contain cutting-edge security, classroom and sustainability features, including geothermal heating and cooling in two of the three. Renovations on the final “Quad” residence hall, Nanticoke, are expected to be completed this summer.

Rebecca Edwards, a junior English major with a secondary education track from Baltimore, said she chose campus housing for several reasons: “It’s very convenient to be five minutes away from everything at SU. I feel very safe on campus.”

Her experiences in St. Martin Hall last academic year encouraged her to remain on campus this fall, when she will move into Chester Hall. “Community development is very important,” she said. “In St. Martin, you’re able to feel connected, but still have your own space. It offers a combination of privacy and community.”

In August, SU opens the largest residence hall in campus history, the 230,000-square-foot Sea Gull Square residence-retail complex. Student rooms in the 605-bed building are already at 100 percent occupancy for its first year.

“I’ve always wanted to live in a place like University Park [an SU-affiliated apartment complex], but that’s further away from the main campus,” said Patrisha Campbell, a senior social work major from Takoma Park, MD who plans to be among Sea Gull Square’s first residents. “This, being on the main campus, is much more convenient.”

At the same time, Campbell hopes to get renting experience she can use once she graduates: “I think it’s very important in college to experience the leasing process so when you’re out on your own, you have an idea what you’re doing. Having it on campus gives you a little bit of a safety net.”

Founded in 1994, Educational Benchmarking, Inc. is the industry leader in providing comprehensive, comparative assessment instruments and analysis to support quality improvement efforts at colleges and universities.

For more information call 410-543-6030 or visit the SU Web site at www.salisbury.edu.



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