Today: Apr 21, 2024

Senior year starts off with fleas and stitches – Opinion

Sarah SheltonPhoto Editor

Every year something seems to go wrong with my dorm, but this year has topped it. 

As a senior, I was finally excited to move into North Campus for the first time. My roommate and I both have a single with a shared kitchen. That means our own bathrooms and king-sized beds.  

On the first day of move-in, my toilet was covered in pee stains so bad that the entire seat was discolored and could not be scrubbed away. 

I honestly could not wait for maintenance as I was getting no response, so I drove to target and got a toilet seat for $24.99, with no reimbursement. After moving everything in I was happy with my dorm. 

Within a day or two after move-in, which I moved in early for work, I noticed bug bites on my ankles. I brushed it off as mosquitos as I was swatting them away the night before.  

When my roommate moved in a couple of days later, within one day, she started getting bug bites in the same place.  

I checked my mattress for days and there were no bed bugs in sight. I felt relief every day after checking. 

My roommate then started finding tiny bugs on her; I too found one on my arm and one on my slippers. 

On Wednesday, Aug. 30, we put in a work order for extermination.  

The next day we went into my bedroom and found multiple bugs on my rug. We put one in a plastic bag and brought it down to the front desk for help. 

That’s how we found out our room was infested with fleas. 

The Resident Advisors on duty asked if we had any pets at home. Was I scared to admit I have a dog? Yes. Jax always has a flea and tick collar on, so it could not be from him. My mom also deep cleans the house almost daily. 

The amount of fleas we have found in our room at that point was too many for me to have brought here anyway, especially since I had not been in the other bedroom. Both bedrooms and our shared common room had these bugs that blended in with the carpeted floors. 

I did not know how to handle this situation as I have never dealt with fleas.  

Everyone helping us quickly realized this was probably from whoever stayed in our room over the summer. Probably the same person who peed all over my toilet seat.  

The director of Schwartz Hall talked to us Wednesday night. We were told we had to stay in our room with the fleas, because of the university’s pest control and central housing rules, and told the Exterminators could not come until Friday.  

While agreeing with the fact we should not spread the fleas, we were not the ones who brought it, nor should we have been forced to stay in this room. 

We did not want to bring them to our homes, so we had no choice but to stay with our flea roommates who refuse to leave our carpet. 

My mom and brother had to drive up that night after 9 p.m. and go to Walmart to get us flea spray and sticky traps, which I got permission to use that night, and we cleaned.  

On Thursday, Sept. 1, our hall director, Clint Gosselin, finally gave us the option to relocate, but my roommate Ali and I agreed we would make a decision after the exterminators came as they may be able to fix the problem. 

Finally Friday came and we were ready to evacuate for a few hours, but that never happened. However, we finally got confirmation there was a cat here over the summer who left the fleas. 

The exterminator checked my room and claimed he did not find anything, even though I found three new bites that morning. He was about to leave so Ali asked him to check her room and he found some. He said he will come back on Monday to treat it. 

Gosselin was just as disappointed as us. We all had the impression they were treating it that day. He offered to move us to a new room permanently and started working on paperwork to get us a free laundry card to wash everything. 

Ali and I were very grateful for Gosselin as he seemed to be the only one at the university taking this very seriously. He also took fast action which we did not receive in West Campus last year. 

In the words of my mom, “this is ridiculous, why are they making you live with bugs for three more days?” 

Ali and I started cleaning the new room, and as I was doing laundry I slipped and hit my head pretty hard on the washing machine door. I felt very embarrassed that I injured myself while doing laundry.  

The laundry room floor was very waxy, but my slides may have been a little slippery due to Wednesday’s flea spray. Either way, I somehow ended up on the ground. 

There was no cell service in the laundry room and my calls would not go through, but eventually one somehow got through to Ali and she had to run down the hallway with paper towels, as open foreheads tend to bleed a lot. 

Poor Gosselin also had to take care of bloody me after spending all day taking care of our flea problem and moving situation. 

I was taken to the hospital for the concussion and had to get five stitches near my eyebrow. Yay for my black eye and the new permanent scar. 

Also, my dog Jax is okay and flea- free. Good thing he loves taking baths, because he will be taking many more to make sure my mom did not bring it home. 

What a great way to start off senior year. Beware of Room 311. 

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