South University neighborhood students concerned with sleep deprived nights and uninvited guests along campus boundary
by Alli Jarvinen
Living in the South University neighborhood means constant partying for some University of Oregon students, but for others the neighborhood offers a short walk to classes and better access to their education. Both serious students and party animals alike lose sleep over out-of-hand gatherings.
“There’s always something going on. It’s kind of a miracle I haven’t dropped out,” joked one sophomore who lives in a house two blocks south of campus. Waking up on time for class is his biggest struggle.
Getting enough sleep to function in school can be hard without a quiet place to crash. “I wish that partying was only allowed on Saturday nights. I can’t get to sleep before midnight most nights,” said Riley, an architecture major who spends most nights sleeping on his couch instead of his bed because his bedroom window faces 19th avenue.
Across the street from Riley is a row of apartments. He blames the dense grouping of student dwellings for the noise that keeps him up at night. “The biggest party I’ve ever seen happened during midterms,” said Riley. When he decided to hold a study session for a midterm one Wednesday night, a nearby party seemed to flow into his front yard.
“There was a guy getting sick in the bushes and girl popping a squat. I was pissed!” said Riley.
Parties overflow and become large quickly along the campus boundary in this area. Even seemingly controlled gatherings can grow unexpectedly. “A pack of freshman girls walked into our party last weekend. No one even knew them. If they weren’t so drunk they’d have realized they weren’t welcome,” said business major Justin. “It’s like dorm kids just walk around looking for a party and when they find one they just think they’re automatically invited”.
Some students find the demands of school too high to continue living on the campus edge of South University. “Its a bummer I can’t move right now,” said Maria, a student studying political science. “My lease has me stuck and since I don’t have a car, I need to be able to walk to campus.”
Moving further from campus as students get further into their education at UO seems to be a trend. This may have something to do with the increased demand of higher level classes. “I couldn’t function when I lived near campus,” said senior Katherine, who now lives in the south Eugene Amazon neighborhood. “I never got more than six hours of sleep. The Greeks were always holding some event and my neighbors couldn’t respect noise levels,” said Katherine about living in the South University area. “I’ve never been a partier, so I don’t know what I was thinking.”
(Considerate Party Guidelines from the South University Neighborhood Association)