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GCSU receives Public Private Ventures Award for Housing

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POSTED: December 3, 2007
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GCSU receives Public Private Ventures Award for Housing

Georgia College and State University was awarded the Public Private Ventures Award for Housing for their level of engagement with the Board of Regents and the Finance Team on the repositioning of their $100 million student housing projects. This time last year the University was faced with a major crisis in their housing program. Occupancy had dropped to an all time low of 61% at the West Campus and 91% at the Main Campus. The occupancy changes were caused by private developers delivering over 1,000 new luxury style beds to the market. This problem had serious implications on both the University as well as the University System public private ventures program that could impact all campuses.

GCSU engaged in developing a reposition strategy to overcome these challenges. They developed a way to refinance the $104 million bond issue which involved the execution of a rental agreement, raising funds to make enhancements to the housing, and providing the ability to lower costs to the students. The level of engagement included assessing the customer service satisfaction of students through detail market studies, surveys, focus groups, and private sector analyses

The results of these activities led to changes in accountability: such as the marketing campaign of – "Off-Campus freedom made on campus easy" – meaning upperclassmen were given more freedom while the level of staff involvement assured parents of a comfortable level of guidance. GCSU balanced the housing on both campus locations permitting upperclassmen to live on the main campus and allowing freshmen to live at the west campus who participated in their three new learning communities. They reorganized housing operations to ensure consistency with customer’s service to the students and parents.

The remarkable results of all this activity resulted in the occupancy levels at the West Campus going from 61% to 92% and the Main Campus going from 91% to 97% all in one year’s time.

Pete Shields, GCSU Vice President for Business and Finance, accepted the award on GCSU's behalf.

For more information, contact Pete Shields at (478) 445-5148.

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For more information, contact Judy Bailey in University Communications at (478) 445-4477.