Student Housing and Dining Services Strategic Plan2021

Initiative: Expand Services to New and Underserved Student Populations

This initiative encompasses the following strategies:

  • Housing Guarantee & MOU: City of Davis, Yolo County and UC Davis
  • Capital Planning & Diversified Portfolio
  • Residential Curriculum Model
  • Address Housing and Food Insecurity

Housing Guarantee & MOU: City of Davis, Yolo County and UC Davis

In support of UC Davis’ mission and in line with other UC campuses, housing is guaranteed to all incoming first year freshmen and transfer students. For fall 2020, Student Housing and Dining Services extended the housing guarantee to include a second year guarantee of housing for returning first-year freshmen and transfer students. More than 90 percent of all incoming freshmen and 30 percent of incoming transfer students contract to live in on-campus student housing. Note: At the direction of UC Office of the President, the housing guarantee was suspended for 2020-21 due to COVID-19. Freshman and second year students are accommodated in single-, double-, and triple-occupancy residence hall rooms. First and second year transfer students are accommodated in studio apartments and apartments featuring single- and double-occupancy bedrooms.

Historically, most continuing students have chosen to live off campus for their second year and beyond, as Davis is a college town. The rental market in the City of Davis has been historically tight, meaning students often had to secure housing six months before the start of the new lease year, which starts September 1. In fall 2018, the City of Davis, County of Yolo, and the University of California, Davis agreed to a legally binding memorandum of understanding (MOU). The terms of the MOU include a commitment to build more on-campus housing for students, a joint transportation plan and traffic improvement projects, the elimination of master leases in the City of Davis, and forming a stronger town-gown partnership through a variety of collaborative activities. This MOU high-lights the need and importance of on-campus housing. Read the Inaugural Joint Housing Report (11/01/2019).The MOU states UC Davis would provide 100% of housing for any growth in enrollment. Student Housing and Dining Services master leases in the city ended in August 2020 when 1,005 new beds were made available through phase 1 of theThe Green at West Village project. Phase 2 of The Green at West Village project includes 2300 beds and is expected to open in fall 2021. Overall, UC Davis is committed to providing 12,500 beds by fall 2021 and 15,000 beds by fall 2023 - as of the date this plan was implemented, we are on track to meet this goal.

Capital Planning & Diversified Portfolio

To meet the obligation set forth in the 2018 Memorandum of Understanding, Student Housing and Dining Services has the following capital projects under construction or in planning:

  • The Green at West Village: this project is a P3 partnership with The Michaels Organization and Collegiate Housing Foundation, will provide ~3,300 beds for incoming transfers and continuing undergraduates. The first phase opened in fall 2020, and the remaining beds will be available by fall 2021.
  • Shasta Hall: this project is a residence hall project under construction at the former site of Emerson Hall in the Cuarto housing area. 800 beds, organized in a suite-style configuration, will be available for incoming freshman and second year students. This project will open in fall 2021.
  • Orchard Park Apartments This project will replace a decommissioned housing complex and is in the design phase and pending UC Regents approval. The plan is to develop 1,100 beds for single graduates, and 200 family/grad units. Total of approximately 1500 beds. This project will open for fall 2023.
  • Primero Grove: this project is an existing P3 property, with 181 studio, 1-, 2-, 3- and 4-bedroom apartments, in the Segundo housing area. The past several years, Student Housing and Dining Services has leased space in Primero Grove to provide first year and transfer housing to meet the housing guarantee. In fall 2021, the plan is to repurpose Primero Grove to meet the growing needs of student families and single graduate students. This transition may adjust slightly to include isolation/quarantine housing and space for first-year students, all due to COVID-19 response.
  • Solano Park Apartments: Approximately 60% of Solano Park apartments, a property on the southeast corner of campus, will be closed and demolished to provide land for a campus gateway to the Nishi Project. This will occur after the Primero Grove apartments are converted to family and graduate student housing. The Nishi project is scheduled to open in fall 2023 and, through a partnership with UC Davis, will provide 2,200 beds for continuing undergraduate and graduate students.

Diversified Portfolio: These projects will add to the diversified portfolio of housing options for UC Davis students. This portfolio meets the needs of incoming undergraduate students, continuing students, single graduate students, and student families. The portfolio includes different price points based on type of financing, age of facility, and amenities available.

Residential Curriculum Model

The Office of Student Development (OSD) will continue to implement best practices and meet the needs of the various student & student family populations in housing. In 2019, OSD began the process of creating a certified “Residential Curriculum” model that looks at meeting the needs of students individually, in small groups and in large groups. The creation of this co-curricular program allows for customization for various student groups and to ensure additional support for student academic success.

Address Housing and Food Insecurity

UC Davis, along with colleges and universities throughout the United States, has identified and begun addressing the needs of college students who are housing or food insecure. In 2018, UC Davis opened Aggie Compass to serve the needs of these students. To align with the campus goal of increasing supply and affordability of housing, Student Housing and Dining Services collaborates with Aggie Compass to provide food and other resources to Aggie Compass for redistribution.

Using UCOP funds allocated for this purpose, Student Housing and Dining Services created a Basic Needs Advocate position within the unit of Inclusion and Operational Development. This position collaborates with the Division of Student Affairs to address all matters that aid students' in their transition to off campus housing and supports food and housing insecurity on campus. Funding has been identified to provide direct support, including a comprehensive Rapid Rehousing program for homeless students that incorporates tools for financial management and independent living.

Mortgage Origination Program Funds have been made available from UCOP to each campus, to support student housing needs. In partnership with the Aggie Compass program, SHDS is using a portion of the funds to provide a $100 a month subsidy for 15% of the residents at The Green, based on financial need. SHDS is exploring continuation of this subsidy in future years through other means. A similar program will be created for the new Orchard Park community.

Dining Services (DS) is also considering the needs of additional apartment residents, having created a new meal plan for apartments (9 meals a week) that was designed to address students' food insecurity. Students who may have had the smaller meal plan were ineligible for CalFresh because the meal plan provided more than half of their meal. Having the 9 meals a week plan provides the opportunity for students to have dedicated meals on campus as well as qualify for CalFresh to assist with any food insecurity. DS also opened Sage Street Market and Cafe in 2020 supporting coffee and convenience store options to the West Village district neighborhood.

This strategic initiative is aligned with the following goal(s) in UC Davis’ strategic plan, “To Boldly Go”:

  • Goal 1: Provide an educational experience that prepares all of our students to address the needs and challenges of a diverse and changing world.
  • Goal 3: Embrace diversity, practice inclusive excellence and strive for equity. Make UC Davis a place of excellence for learning and working by supporting a culture that values the contributions and aspirations of all our students, staff and faculty; promotes wellness and a culture of sustainability; and cultivates the open interchange of ideas.
  • Goal 5: Create an intellectual and physical environment that supports the development of an innovative and entrepreneurial culture that extends the benefits of our research activities beyond the boundaries of the university.