Part II: AC installation in graduate student housing
Date: July 2022
The response below provides additional context to the original question, “Can the Graduate School provide funds for AC installation in graduate student housing?”
Dear Graduate Students,
I have received a request for further information about the air conditioner installation fee at Hasbrouck Apartments, and I’m glad to provide some additional background. It’s been a hot, dry July, so it’s understandable that students want to know what their options are for staying cool in campus residences. I also want to offer my support to help direct individuals with health conditions that require a cooler environment or financial hardship toward resources that can help them cover the cost.
In short, the $200 fee is based on the actual costs of installation and the energy use of these units. Our maintenance mechanics must install every air conditioning unit so that it is pitched properly to drain outdoors instead of into the apartment, ensure that gaps around the unit are sealed to keep out insects, ensure that units on the second floor are secure and do not pose a risk to people below, and minimize damage to the windowsill and frame for the sake of future residents. In addition, maintenance mechanics must remove the units in the fall.
Air conditioning units use energy, so part of the “installation fee” actually goes to cover the additional electric cost of running the air conditioner (since utilities are included in the rent at Hasbrouck). The Office of Student and Campus Life analyzed the electrical load of typical size units and typical runtimes to estimate the energy cost.
I may be able to offer additional assistance for students who have health issues, caregiving responsibilities, or other factors that make the situation more complicated. In doing so, we can explore options and connect with other resources. For example, if the heat is causing health issues, we could work with Student Disability Services or make an application for an emergency grant to figure out if there are resources that could help.
Finally, the Graduate School has been able to allocate some funding to help cover installation costs for Hasbrouck residents who are experiencing financial hardship. If this is your situation, please reach out to me for help (email@example.com).
Senior Assistant Dean for Graduate Student Life