In an attempt to develop more positive relations between North and South Village residents, Geneseo will hold a “Trading Spaces”-style week. This comes in response to a fight that occurred Saturday Sept. 22 at the In Between involving residents from Wayne and Erie Halls.
Sharon Versa, the dean of students, sent an email Tuesday Sept. 25 to faculty, on-campus students and parents explaining the situation.
In the email Versa wrote, “Although it is still uncertain which party started the fight, residents from Wayne and Erie Halls engaged each other in a free-for-all fight over who has a worse living experience. Those involved received minor cuts and bruises and only a few needed minor medical attention.”
The email discussed the driving force behind this upcoming event.
“It was obvious that tensions between the two groups were rising,” she said. “We had hoped that by forcing North Village students to eat at Mary Jemison Dining Hall and removing the grill option from Red Jacket Dining Hall’s dinner options that all students would find more in common. Clearly, that wasn’t enough.”
Department chair of sociology Shayne Hemmington provided details on the week’s events.
“We’re calling it Operation TRR, which stands for Trading Rooms and Roommates,” Hemmington said. “Random students from both sides of campus will be picked to switch rooms with other students for the entire week, including the weekend.”
Hemmington assured students that this week would be a positive and insightful experience.
“Try to think of your very first slumber party and how much fun that was,” he said. “This is exactly the same situation except instead of sleeping at a friend’s house, it’s a fellow student’s dorm. That is, in my opinion, much more exciting.”
Students will be chosen to participate the Friday following fall break and the room swap will begin the following Sunday. Those who are chosen are allowed to bring toiletries, study materials and enough clothing for the week. Rooms will be assigned that same Sunday so that students do not have time to plan living conditions with their temporary roommates in advance.
Versa said that participation in this event is not voluntary and will be enforced.
“For every day any student does not stay in their assigned room, we will shut down Lotus in Fusion Market.”
Freshman Anthony Weiser said he understood why Operation TRR was necessary for the student body.
“Every time I tell another student I live in Onondaga, they gasp in horror,” he said. “It’s that kind of reaction that leads to these kinds of fights. Hopefully this will show north-siders that we’re people too.”
“I honestly think they’ve gone crazy,” said junior Emers Linken, who lives in Ontario Hall. “I lived on south side for two years before finally getting to Ontario. There is no way I’m going back there, even for a week.