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Monday, September 26, 2022
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Greiner Hall To Bring Easy Living to UB

Dorm rooms in the movies are always so much nicer than real life. But now, with the addition of William R. Greiner Hall to the University at Buffalo campus, life may really be that sweet.

This August, the new building, located next to the Ellicott Complex, will be open for residency to 600 sophomores, giving the class of 2014 the first chance to live there.

"It'll add much needed sophomore housing to the campus," said Barbara Ricotta, the associate vice-president for student affairs. "We have upper-class housing, we have graduate housing and freshman housing, but we don't have anything that's specifically geared for sophomores, which is why the building was designed."

The rooms in Greiner Hall are suite-style, with a few singles sprinkled in. Each suite features two double rooms with a storage area, sink area, and a shower room. There will be air conditioning and heat that can be controlled by the residents, vaulted ceilings, and flexible-use furniture in each room.

Each floor will have a lounge with a large-screen TV, a kitchen, and a laundry room, and there will be wireless Internet and cable TV access throughout the building.

"I'm really hopeful about living there; it's my first choice for housing," said Sara Ogurek, a freshman biomedical sciences major. "I like that it's new and air-conditioned, and I like the setup of the rooms."

Greiner Hall is not only for residential living, as it will also include a business center, entertainment lounge, and classrooms. The building's premise is to enrich the academic experience of the students who live in it by blending residential, academic, and recreational amenities.

"The first floor will be a real living, learning opportunity. There will be classrooms on the first floor [that], in the evenings, can be converted to receptions, workshops, all kinds of things," Ricotta said. "The upper floors will be secure, so if you don't live in the building, you can't go upstairs. It'll have the latest in technology. It'll have areas for small study groups to work together. It's the future of housing, to combine the living and learning areas."

Named after the university's 13th president, William R. Greiner, who served at UB for 42 years, the hall hopes to follow in his vision of making the university a place of vibrant intellectual and social life. At a public memorial for Greiner, who died in 2009, guests had the chance to sign a structural beam that would become an important part of the new hall. Greiner's leadership at UB helped to transform student life, developing the state-of-the-art apartment complexes that are here today.

Greiner Hall is also another way for UB to extend its green streak, as it will be certified as a LEED Gold building. This title, awarded by the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, acknowledges "green" work in building. Some features Greiner Hall will have are eco-friendly furnishings, high-efficiency faucets, Energy Star appliances, recycled building materials, and energy-wise building exteriors and windows.

The building will feature an Au Bon Pain Café, providing students with alternatives to dorm food. It will be located on the first floor, which will be accessible to everyone on campus. To obtain access to the rest of the building, residents will be able to swipe their cards to get to the elevator or stairs.

Assignments for Greiner will be made with a lottery system. Sophomores will be given preference based on the number of semesters they have lived at UB, with students who have lived here for two semesters receiving higher preference than those who have lived here for one semester or not at all.

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Students who have submitted their housing deposit will be notified if they are eligible to live in Greiner and can indicate a preference to live there between March 8 and 10. Eligible students will then be grouped based upon the numbers of semesters they have lived on the UB campus, and random reservation numbers will be assigned to students within each group. Starting with the lowest number assigned, students will be given spaces in Greiner Hall until they have all been filled.

If students know with whom they want to room, they may apply as two roommates or as four suitemates, and the lottery numbers of the students who are together will be averaged to produce one number, which will dictate the group's assignment. The first wave of Greiner assignments will be sent out the week of March 14, and students will be able to decide if they want to spend the next year in the new hall.

"It's an exciting new addition to housing for students," Ricotta said. "I think the students are excited and interested in it."




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