Posts Tagged ‘The Shaft’

The Shaft | Mar. 31 10:13 pm EST

Junior day predictions

The class of 2015 got its turn on Friday, and it’s now time to see 2016 get their chance. What will go tomorrow?

  • The best of 600: Expect the B and D apartments in 600 to go very early. Despite the fact that they are all doubles, these apartments are beautiful and quite desirable. Only six of these remain, so without a senior pull in, don’t expect to land one.

  • 616: All of it. The likelihood of any suites being left in 616 for sophomore selection is about equivalent to the chances of going for a swim in the Barnard pool right about now.

  • Lots of Plimpton: Not ALL of Plimpton will be selected on junior day but 2016 will make a HUGE dent. Since a significant portion of 2016 lived there this year, they’ve grown accustomed to Amsterdam and Apple Tree and have come to love it. Their clear affinity for singles sealed the deal: Many groups are hoping to return to Plimpton, this time with a better view.

  • Various parts of 620: Let’s be real, the lower floors of 620 are a bit strange–there are interesting seven-person suites, some suites have common rooms, and some don’t. There are 5 six-person suites that could be taken shortly after 616 is gone.

  • The last of CG: The 2 remaining four-person suites will disappear quite early.

  • Some Hewitt/Some Elliot/Some 110th: Hewitt will be taken by those going abroad and not wanting to mess up the plans of their friends picking suites. Elliot will go to those who desperately want singles and not be on the full meal plan. 110th has some simply phenomenal apartments that juniors would be smart to snatch up.

The above is likely but we still have several burning questions: More »


The Shaft | Mar. 29 6:05 pm EST
senior day

One down, two to go: Senior Day recap

Check out our Barnard room selection predictions post!

Senior day has ended, and it was truly predictable. CG has been almost entirely chosen. Sulz Tower is gone save for two halves of doubles. The last Sulz Tower single was chosen by #285. The last group to pick into the top floors of 620 was #101. The last group to choose a five-person suite in 620 was #39, and the rest of the five-person groups picked 616Ds. After the predictable options ran out, several seniors began grasping at straws. Some picked into Plimpton singles, while others resorted to Hewitt or Elliot. Several studio singles in 110th were chosen but many remain. A few groups picked into great six-person apartments in 600 and 616, but overall the seniors didn’t make a large dent in either building.

Perhaps the biggest shocker of the day was that #1 was not present. The holder of lottery number 1 has elected to pull in underclassmen, making #2 the new #1. The first group to pick excitedly chose Sulz Tower. The rest of the groups to pick early shared in the excitement. Group #6, who chose the coveted 10A suite in 620, said: “We’re really excited for a really big common space, huge rooms, a hallway, and hopefully there’s no roaches.”

Some waiting outside Brooks Lounge from the very beginning weren’t quite as excited. A couple groups with early selection times were trying to find the extra number they needed to fill the suite they wanted. Despite this anxiety, the mood was pretty happy during the early picks of room selection. More »


The Shaft | Mar. 28 12:03 am EST
drumroll please

Barnard room selection kicks off tomorrow

As more and more of Barnard groups up, a couple things have become quite clear:
2) If you’re willing to live in a double, your housing dreams just might come true.

The continued lack of 6 groups to be formed is astounding. As of now there are only 50 groups formed, and if this trend remains consistent after everyone has grouped up, sophomores could potentially pick into 600. Even more astounding than the lack of 6 groups is the multitude of 5 groups. At one point there were twice as many 5 groups as there are 5-person suites available, mostly because of rising seniors. A word to the wise: the bulk of the 5-person groups that have been sitting in front of you for the past week are not going away. Their theoretical sixth that just hasn’t gotten around to putting themselves into the system yet does not exist.

Juniors, I know you’re adverse to this, but be prepared to double up. The single or bust attitude will land some of you in Hewitt, some of you in Plimpton, and most of you passing up excellent suites in the 600 block. Many excellent suites with giant doubles will be available for picking on junior day but they might just be passed over and left for sophomores.

Sophomores, hold out and wait—with the irrationality of seniors’ choices thus far, you could luck into something you thought you couldn’t get. If you’re flexible enough to live in a double you just might get to have great housing AND get to keep working on dismantling the patriarchy.

So, what will happen tomorrow when the seniors take the first crack at room selection? More »


The Shaft | Mar. 27 8:18 pm EST
game of homes

You know your lottery number—here are our predictions

After some confusion about lottery numbers being assigned to multiple groups, we now have for you our full Shaft predictions for this year’s Room Selection. As always, email us at or write a comment with your questions. As a refresher, here are last year’s cutoffs.

It’s not very likely there will be a wait list this year. With the number of people who go abroad, move off campus, or transfer into a SIC, it’s likely everyone will be able to pick into rooms during selection. If there is a wait list, it’ll probably be pretty short. This means that if you’re a sophomore with a bad number hoping to drop to online and get on the wait list, you might just end up with worse options than you had originally, which is what happened to many of the highest-numbered sophomore groups last year.

Groups of 2, 5, and 7 are in the best shape this year. Groups of 3, 4, 6, and 8 are most likely to be disappointed—particularly 4-person groups. Lots of seniors and juniors will have to drop to regroup or online due to large number of 4-, 6-, and 8-person groups registered. Below, read our more detailed analysis and more predictions for sophomores. More »


The Shaft | Mar. 26 11:33 am EST
The Shaft

Search for your air-conditioned soulmate with our interactive map

Struggling to find your perfect dorm? The Shaft is here to help with an interactive campus map. Here, you’ll find descriptions of each building, as well as a feature that considers your preferred amenities and pairs you with your ideal match. It’s the OKCupid of Columbia residential life.

Keep checking back with the Shaft for more housing updates!

Interactive feature by Karen Nan, Smita Patankar, and Sneha Silwal

Interactive feature by Karen Nan, Smita Patankar, and Sneha Silwal


The Shaft | Mar. 25 2:43 pm EST
oopsie daisy

Lottery numbers are glitchy, and there’s a group of 19

We interrupt our regularly scheduled programming lottery number analysis to let everyone know that the lottery numbers released included several glitches. The algorithm Housing used to generate groups’ lottery numbers assigned multiple groups the same number, which is why there are groups larger than the max of 8 (there’s even a group of 19!).

Housing has emailed these groups to let them know that their choices won’t be affected because groups assigned the same number are of different sizes and thus are looking at different options. However, we’re still trying to give you the most accurate predictions and advice, which is a bit complicated by the possibility that any group larger than 3 could be a combination of smaller ones.

So here’s where we need your help: If you are a member of a group that was assigned the same lottery number as another group, email us at to let us know your point value, lottery number, and actual group size. The more people who let us know that their group of 6 is actually a combination of a 4 and a 2 (for example), the sooner we can give you analysis, and the more accurate our predictions will be. More »


The Shaft | Mar. 24 4:57 pm EST
columbia lottery

UPDATE: Columbia lottery numbers released

Attention CC and SEAS students: Housing numbers are apparently out! Check here, and may the lottery be ever in your favor. Stay tuned for a full analysis by The Shaft tomorrow!

For all your housing needs, Spec has a calculator which will tell you how many groups of your size are ahead of you. This will save your life. You’re welcome.



The Shaft | Mar. 24 3:51 pm EST
what it all means

Barnard, here’s what your lottery number means

Lottery numbers are out and floor plans are live, meaning that housing is officially upon us. With the most massive senior class Barnard has ever seen and shockingly few six-person groups formed so far, how will this year’s lottery break down?

Senior preferences: It seems that this year’s senior class is staying true to form: they love CG, they love studio singles, and they love Sulz Tower. Floors 5-10 of 620 are sure to fill up fast, but 616 will likely remain empty post-senior day. Seniors seem to prefer CG to 600 or 616, but with only 90 students actually housed in CG, 200 more in 620/Sulz Tower, and 30 in studio singles, this class will still need to make a huge dent somewhere. These seniors will need backup plans, but what will be most important to them—location or singles?

Plimpton: Lots of juniors want to return to Plimpton for another year. The draw of Ptown’s singles beats 600’s location for quite a few girls. This could mean several F-apartments in 600 being available for sophomore day. More »


The Shaft | Mar. 15 5:36 pm EST
600 minutes

Housing strategy tips for Barnard juniors and seniors

Most of you are already familiar with the nature of the lottery since you’ve done it once before. Thankfully, this time you won’t start with the rest of what’s left.

We went over 110th, Plimpton, Hewitt, and Elliot in the last post with advice for sophomores. Now here’s some insight into the other (higher demand) dorms:

  • 620: the coveted top 6 floors of 620 are known to be a dream … suites of all singles, most featuring a common room, dishwasher, and a lovely view. The bottom floors of 620 could potentially be filled with lots of disability suites (there are more ODS students than usual this year). These lower floors feature many tiny doubles, decent singles, and common rooms. Not bad overall.
  • 616: As this is the only building in the 600 block that houses only Barnard students, it contains a lovely lounge and computer room (with printers). The C suites (4 singles, 1 double) will likely fill very quickly as will the D suites (3 singles, 1 double) due to overflow of seniors who did not pick into 620. The A and B suites should be fair game for juniors with decent numbers.
  • 600: If you don’t mind living in doubles and having potentially noisy neighbors, this is the building for you. The location is as good as it gets, and the newly redone kitchens and bathrooms are beautiful.
  • Cathedral Gardens: I won’t lie, I haven’t walked the 15 minutes to check this one out, but I do hear that it’s worth it. There’s an abundance of singles and spacious common rooms. If you’re OK with a long walk (and the public safety shuttle will help you out), CG is a great place to be.
  • Sulz Tower: The view is gorgeous and there are a ton of singles. The kitchens, despite being more communal than suite style, are kept pretty tidy. Plus you get to live right on campus, which comes with the additional bonus of the Orgo Night Barnard quad dance party being right at your front door.

More »


The Shaft | Mar. 12 6:10 pm EST
Dorm Previews

Previewing Ruggles and Claremont

We’re moving along in the housing process—the registration deadline is today, so now is the last chance to explore the different options available for groups. It’s especially important to consider your chances, because for certain group sizes, there are relatively few options available.

Ruggles and Claremont are two of the most popular dorms for groups looking to live in a suite together, and also tend to fill up less quickly than other dorms like EC and Hogan. Both boast spacious and well-equipped suite lounges, suite bathrooms and external common areas. Ruggles has:

  • 8 4-person suites: cutoff 30/1222
  • 8 5-person suites: no cutoff data available
  • 1 1st floor 6-person suites: cutoff 20/761
  • 12 8-person suites (2 singles and 3 doubles): cutoff 20/2918
  • 2 8-person suites (4 singles and 2 doubles): cutoff 21.25/700

As you can see, many of these suites—especially the 8-person suites—end up lasting into junior selection. We recommend that, if you want to live in Ruggles as a junior, you choose an 8-person group and be open to living in one of the doubles in a 2 single/3 doubles suite. If you manage to get a senior or two to join your group, you may even have a shot at the 4 single/2 doubles suite, but these tend to go faster.

More »