You’ve Got Mail? Students React to New System

By Grace Arenas
Elm Staff Writer

Returning students arrived on campus in August to find a change in the status quo.

The mail system, which previously assigned students mailboxes in alphabetical order, has been revised so that each student is assigned a permanent box number for his or her four years at Washington College.

“The amount of changes each year will be cut by three quarters, as only incoming freshmen and transfer students will be issued mailboxes,” said Assistant Director of Central Services Beverly Nickerson. She said this makes the check-in process at the beginning of each fall semester easier on everybody; a large portion of the student body will not need to concern itself with finding a new mailbox number.

According to Nickerson, “most other schools have been utilizing the mailbox number system for years.”

Nickerson also said that the general response to the new system has been positive, and students have said “how much more sense it makes” to have one mailbox for all of their time at WC.

New to the school and the system, freshman Cara Murray agrees.

“I like that I only have one number to memorize for four years,” she said. “It’s more realistic.”

“It’s very convenient; you only have one number to tell your family,” said freshman Megan McCurdy. When ordering online, where stores keep track of customers in virtual address books, “you’d only ever need to enter one address.”

Upperclassmen, now adjusting to the new system, have varied opinions on the change.

Some, like sophomore Jasmine Bibbs, agree that the mailbox number system will “be easier to use.” “It’s simple, it’s practical, and it’s worth keeping,” said junior Ben Longwell.

However, there are those who find fault with the change.
With the old system, sending inter-campus mail was as simple as writing a name and specifying that the receiver was a student on campus. Senior Meaghan Moxley said she now has to track down individual numbers.

“While it might not seem like an ordeal, when you are trying to send mail to a large group of people, some of whom might have their information listed as private, it can become a problem,” said Moxley.

Sophomore Erin Cooper said she had to “inform anyone and everyone” who regularly sends her mail of her new box number, a process she found “tedious.” Nevertheless, she commented that the job of mailroom workers was most likely made easier as a result of the plan, and with individual numbers, the occasional mix-ups of mail to students with similar names will be eliminated.

“On the whole, I think the school has taken potential student difficulties into consideration and has designed the new system to be as painless as possible,” Cooper said.

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