UNC school system may not refund housing for 2020-2021 if school is canceled

Posted at 2:59 PM, Jun 24, 2020

The University of North Carolina Greensboro (UNCG) recently released a statement saying that the school may not be refunding students if it is forced to send students home because of COVID-19.

This message is not exclusive to UNCG: the UNC school system said this would apply to all universities in the state. Western Carolina was the first school to send out this message last week to students.

Most North Carolina schools reimbursed students a portion of their room and board after students were sent home in mid-March due to the pandemic.

Namron Chapman, a rising sophomore at N.C. A&T, believes that while it was good that her school reimbursed the remaining balance of her room and board, she believes that not doing it this upcoming school year is not right.

“I felt that it was necessary and required since we lost our housing and could not come back to campus,” Chapman said. “I know last year I had to pay a freshman fee and I did not get that full experience and I was not refunded for that. I think we should get reimbursed for the things we did not or do not [in the future] get to participate in.”

For Chapman, there may be an alternative to living on campus.

"I live in Cedar Grove, which is about 45 minutes from Greensboro. I am most likely going to commute from my house,” Chapman said. “I prefer face-to-face classes and as far as living there, I know people are not going to follow the guidelines and regulations, so I will commute.”

Students have until July 11 to cancel their housing contracts. That leaves students a little more than two weeks to decide whether they are all in with the risks of going to school or if they are all out.

Chapman mentioned that she has considered going to a community college or taking a semester off instead of going back to N.C. A&T.

“I've been thinking about taking a semester off or going to a local community college,” Chapman said. “There is no point in trying to make things normal when nothing is normal.”

A petition was created shortly after the announcement on Monday, titled “UNC System: Refund Housing in 2020-2021 If You Kick Us Out.” As of 3 p.m. on Wednesday, the petition has over 24,250 signatures.