Temple has quite a few desirable things other schools don’t have– real diversity, a basketball team (and coach) to get excited about every year, fine food trucks, a real world campus, for instance.
We don’t, however, have living arrangements that permit men and women to share bedrooms in on-campus housing. Haverford College recently recognized students’ right to act as adults and live with whomever they please — the Delaware County institution will, as of next fall, permit men and women to share bedrooms in select buildings.
Notice that the key words in that sentence are “men” and “women,” not “boys” and “girls.”
Yes, there is a chance that two people convinced they’ll be together forever would take advantage of such an option, break up after a month, and spend the rest of the year in abject misery. That’s unlikely, though, because people in a relationship aren’t likely holding their collective breath for co-ed housing to come through, when living together without restriction has been possible in off-campus housing for years.
Certainly the vast majority of those who live on any campus would choose to live with a same-sex roommate, no matter what the housing policy is. That doesn’t figure to change if Temple’s rules are changed. Furthermore, the Haverford model holds that only upperclassmen may opt for this kind of housing, and because the only people who get roommates of the opposite sex are those who request them, those opposed to the policy don’t have to deal with it.
Temple’s current housing policy lets residents sign in guests of any sex for up to two nights, so it’s not as if men and women never share living space in any capacity. And at Haverford, the change was considered a boon to the gay community, many members of which said the new housing choice would make it easy to avoid uncomfortable situations created by situations where heterosexual and homosexual students live together.
On the most basic level, if we’re billing ourselves as a place where we can do a practice run for the real world, where’s the logic in barring the thought-out, conscious decisions of paying men and women?
In light of the recent furor over the on-campus housing shortage, when rooms in any form would be just fine with most people, it might seem like wishful thinking to argue for co-ed rooms.
Hey, we can dream.