A Happy Problem


Another day… another semester at Gallaudet University.

Classes started for us undergraduate students this recent Monday and we are all becoming reacquainted with the things that go along with being a college student, especially the never-ending stress.

As for me, I’m a fifth-year student this semester, basically an old fart. Truth be told, I feel very much older than the members of the freshman class, when in reality, I’m not that much older.

In the midst of a class I had a few days ago, a discussion began among my classmates about Gallaudet’s “happy problem.” Someone stated that this semester, most of the dorms on campus (we have 5) are full and that there is a lengthy waiting list for students wanting a dorm room. Our professor then joined in and stated that this was certainly a problem, but a happy problem.

What does this mean? Well…

After the 2006 protests, Gally’s reputation was a bit besmirched. Some have said that Gallaudet received less funding from donors and that fewer students enrolled at Gallaudet University. It was questionable if Gallaudet would ever heal from the protests.

Over the years, Gallaudet began and continued a process of rebuilding and evolving. Improvements were made, new ideas flowed, and people began to feel hopeful that a new era was about to begin at Gallaudet (forgive my corniness).

The result of all that hard work? Dorm rooms that are almost completely full with a population of incredibly diverse students. That’s a pretty happy problem to have.

Since my first year here in 2007, Gallaudet has changed so much, all for the better. It’s amazing to see this place that feels so much like home to me, continue to improve.

Here’s hoping that more happy problems appear, and that they’re, of course, solved!



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2 Responses to “A Happy Problem”

  1. Meredith Says:

    Don’t forget, though, that we’ve lost a dorm since the protest. North is now used by MSSD but at the time of the protest it was ours. So I would guess that enrollment has been about the same.

  2. heatherbreitbach23 Says:

    Yes, that is true. But during the time after the protests, the dorms weren’t as full as they are now, even with the loss of Ballard North.

    Has Gallaudet’s total enrollment been the same since the protests? Maybe, I’m not sure. But I’m looking at things like the New Signer’s Program, or Jump Start, which have had increased enrollment. It may be just me, but it seems that the size of the class of incoming students has increased also.

    But then again, you may be right. I would love to see some type of chart showing Gally’s enrollment history.

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