By Karl Terry, PNT managing editor
Communal living comes into play in most college students’ life. For Eastern New Mexico University students that experience just changed for the better.
San Juan Village, the new student housing development at ENMU, is receiving rave reviews from students as they begin moving in for the fall semester, according to ENMU officials.
After a community open house Sunday, staff at ENMU’s Housing Office said 72 students had checked in by Monday afternoon, a little less than a third of the 267 beds.
“It’s wonderful, I love it,” said ENMU senior Jennifer Taylor of Morton, Texas, who was moving in Monday. “I wish I’d had this at my former college (South Plains Junior College).”
Taylor, who has lived at Eddy and Harding Halls in previous years, was living off-campus most recently but was excited about moving back on campus to San Juan Village.
“I like the fact that it’s going to have a dishwasher and garbage disposal as well as a microwave, so I won’t even have to bring a microwave,” Taylor said.
San Juan Village has broken away from the institutional dormitory mold to some degree and offers a variety of amenities one would expect at a newer apartment complex or a retirement village.
“It’s not what we had in college is it?” offered retired wildlife biology professor A.L. Gennaro to a group he was touring with Sunday.
There are one-, two- and four-bedroom apartments that offer high-speed Internet and cable, individual phone lines, private bedrooms along with furniture and appliances.
There is also a clubhouse that has a computer lab, game room with pool table, widescreen TV with surround sound, fitness center and media room.
Outdoors, there is a swimming pool, sand volleyball court and barbecue areas.
“They think it’s the nicest thing on campus, even in Portales,” San Juan Village assistant manager Josh Stephens said of students’ reaction.
Stephens said three of the four buildings are open with the fourth expected later this week. He said so far few problems had been encountered and nothing major had cropped up.
Pete Alamanza a project manager Carleton Construction of Lubbock said his company had enjoyed working on the project in Portales and was glad the project was finished in time for school.
“We had to double up on crews and get this accomplished by the due date,” Alamanza said.