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Why residential halls are the new trend for community colleges

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: Why residential halls are the new trend for community colleges
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It's a big step in a students life when they walk a college campus for the first time. To make the transition easier, SUNY Broome will be opening a new residential hall this fall semester. Time Warner Cable News reporter Katie Husband explains why this is a move more community colleges are making.

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. -- The door was open to the first furnished apartment on SUNY Broome's campus Wednesday. College leaders showed off the future home for students.

"They'll be able to branch out, meet other people at the school and also give them experience because a lot of the people have never lived on campus before, I have never. It will be able to show them whether or not they will want to live on campus when they do transfer," said Emily DePalmo, SUNY BCC resident assistant.

The building can house about 335 students and they have about half already full. This is an effort made by the college to increase student success.

"All the data show that resident students complete at a higher rate than commuter students. You think about commuter life and with family, your job and all of that and the time you spend in the car going back and forth," said SUNY BCC President Dr. Kevin Drumm.

College leaders say having on campus housing available to students is the future of community college life. Almost all two year institutions have it available.

"Now 25 out of the 30 of us have residence halls as of this summer so clearly a fast moving trend here in New York and I know others of the five remaining others are considering it and also across the country community colleges have been adding housing at a very rapid pace," said Drumm.

Future resident assistants say this will be a good opportunity for students not used to living on their own and for those planning on transferring.

"Being away from their families being away from home can be hard and they need an outlet to be able to come and talk and if they have any problems because usually they go to their parents but they won't be here so all the RA's are here for them all the time," said DePalmo.

The rest of the doors to the new residential hall will officially be open to students this fall semester.

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