TOPEKA (KSNT) – Hundreds of new Ichabods will move into their new campus homes in just under a week.

Only a few incoming students have moved into their campus communities for early move-in. The energy and excitement, however, is already starting to build as Washburn will house more people on campus this year than in recent years.

“The on-campus experience is a big part of the college experience, and we do our best to try to highlight that,” Washburn Director of Residential Living Molly Pierson said.

As of Thursday, Washburn had 50 more on-campus residents than last year, but staff tell 27 News it’s only at 83%.

“While that number is up, we still have a few spaces in each building,” Washburn Associate Vice President for Student Life & Dean of Students Teresa Clounch said. “So, if a student is planning to enroll for the fall semester at Washburn and they want to live on-campus, we have some options for them.”

The increase in on-campus residents has been a result of their efforts throughout the year to show incoming students the benefits of campus living.

Pierson is a Topeka native as well as a Washburn Graduate. She is now the director of Residential Living at Washburn. She says the perspective of on-campus housing can extend farther than the university.

“Living on campus really transformed my experience of the city of Topeka,” Pierson said. “I think for me when I reflect back on my own experience, for sure it made a difference in my connection to the university.”

In May, Washburn announced its Shawnee County Thrives scholarship, which offers graduates of a Shawnee County high school $1,000 scholarships annually. Clounch says 122 of those Shawnee County graduates are choosing to live on campus this year.

“Sometimes you get to learn a lot more about the university in your community when you’re living on campus,” Clounch said. “Those students will be able to have the opportunity to learn about that community connection while still having their family nearby.”

Click here for all enrollment and housing information for the 2023 fall semester.