FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Students at the University of Alaska Fairbanks will have a new housing option starting next fall: Coed dormitory rooms.
The university is looking at making at least one floor at Bartlett Hall and three units at Cutler Apartments available for coed-sharing.
The change is part of a new program called gender-inclusive housing. Under the program, a man and woman, two transgender students or any other two-student configurations can share a room.
If demand dictates, other campus rooms may become available as gender-inclusive dorms, said Jamie Abreu, associate director of the campus housing office.
At Bartlett Hall, bathrooms on the coed floor won’t be segregated by gender.
The option for housing is the first of its kind among campuses in the University of Alaska system. More than 100 universities in the U.S., however, already offer such housing options. Coed dormitory rooms were first offered at Oberlin College in Ohio in 1970.
Abreu said the UAF housing office held multiple meetings and forums before deciding on the gender-inclusive option.
“Some people were really excited about it,” she said. “Other people were kind of like ‘That’s a great option. I don’t know if I’d want to live there.’”
At UAF, more than 1,200 students reside in housing on campus. Other specialized campus housing options include freshmen-only dorms and a floor for engineering students.
The housing office is now taking applications for gender-inclusive quarters.