YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Since classes have officially moved online, many students at Youngstown State University are moving out of their dorms.
However, some are still being made to pay for their full lease agreement.
“It made me feel a little bit like they kind of put us second and didn’t really care much about where we were in terms of, we’re students, we might not be able to pay for it because some of it is coming from our financial aid and none of us are working. The ones that are working, our jobs are closing,” said YSU student Haleigh Thompson.
Thompson lives at University Edge. That’s an off-campus student living facility operated by Peak Campus. She said she and her parents felt it would be safest for her to move back home to Columbus to avoid possible exposure to the coronavirus.
Although she moved out, she received an email from Peak Campus stating she was still responsible to carry out her full lease agreement and pay the full rent amount.
“They sent her the email saying, ‘If you decide to move away from campus, that’s fine, let us know, but you are still responsible for the lease,” said Matthew Ward, Haleigh’s dad.
Other student living facilities have let students break their lease agreements due to the special circumstances.
Buechner Hall, a non-profit student living facility, is encouraging students to move out if possible to avoid exposure. They have also refunded money and terminated lease agreements.
YSU has allowed students to end their lease agreements for on-campus living and has issued refunds to students for rent and food plans through the rest of the year.
The Enclave, operated by LRC Campus Management, is another off-campus living facility that is not refunding students or terminating lease agreements early.
Although, it’s management says 60% to 70% of students have already moved out.
“I think the University Edge should allow for some flexibility given what’s going on in the world right now,” Thompson said.
Thompson said as a student and resident, she feels as though the company has put money before morals.
WKBN attempted to contact Peak Campus and LRC Campus Management for comment through email and calls, but did not hear back from either as of Monday, March 23.