Howard U. to begin ‘hyper care’ approach to student housing concerns

In response to a student protest that has gone on for weeks, the administration at D.C.’s Howard University said Monday it was beginning a policy of “hyper care” in regards to health and cleanliness in student housing.

In a statement released by Cynthia Evers, vice president of student affairs, and Tashni-Ann Dubroy, executive vice president and chief operating officer, administrators outlined what that means.

Some of the aspects of Howard’s response include:

  • Wellness checks
  • Wipe-downs of all rooms
  • Deep and daily cleaning
  • The assignment of a vice president and dean to each residence hall “to conduct daily visits and be present in case students have unmet needs that need to be escalated”
  • Training residents to identify and report fungal growth
  • Check-ins with students who have reported signs of mold, mildew or other problems

“We are listening to our residents, and we are meeting them where they are,” Evers and Dubroy said in the statement. “We will continue working to ensure we meet our students’ needs and deliver service that our students deserve and expect.”

Students took over the Blackburn Center earlier this month in a protest over housing conditions and a lack of representation on the university’s board of trustees.

They’ve formed a tent city and have said they will only talk to President Wayne A.I. Frederick and the board of trustees, rejecting attempts by Evers to negotiate.

WTOP’s Ivy Lyons and John Domen contributed to this report.

Rick Massimo

Rick Massimo came to WTOP, and to Washington, in 2012 after having lived in Providence, R.I., since he was a child. He went to George Washington University as an undergraduate and is regularly surprised at the changes to the city since that faraway time.

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