It is because of Hanwoori’s policy of limiting application from students residing in the Seoul metropolitan region, including Yongin, Incheon and Uijeoungbu, while permitting registration of students living in Gwangju, Hwaseong, Yangju and a few other cities. The initial purpose for such restriction was to provide better chances of dormitory acceptance for students residing in more distant parts of the country. However, students living in the excluded regions of Gyeonggi-do are questioning the validity of the disqualification of certain districts.
Hanwoori stated that their criteria for the qualified districts depends on “inconvenient public transportation,” referring to areas where transportation is not frequent or commute takes about two to three hours long. This would include cities and islands on the outskirts of the metropolis.
To put everything in perspective, Ewha Voice researched the shortest distance and time from the City Halls of each city to the ECC via public transportation according to Naver Map. The results were as follows: Gwangju was 42km away, an approximate 1 hour 36 minute commute; Yangju was 34km away, an estimated 1 hour 38 minute commute; Yongin was 52km away and it took about 1 hour 42 minutes to commute; and Suwon was 43km away, an approximate 1 hour 42 minute commute. However, only the students residing in the first two cities out of the four are eligible for registration.
Some places such as Hwaseong or Osan, both eligible for dormitory application, are more than 2 hours away from school, giving sufficient reason for being applicable areas. However, as can be seen above, the distance and commute time between some of the eligible and ineligible areas are miniscule, being the main point of students’ complaints.
“I don’t think it is appropriate for the standards to be of convenience of public transportation,” Lee said.
She stated that even within the same city, students reside in different areas, which may result in students living in cities with “more convenient transportation” to take longer to commute than students living in cities with “inconvenient transportation.”
On the other hand, officials of Hanwoori Hall responded that due to the limited number of accommodations, the dormitory prioritized students who lived further away within Gyeonggi-do.
Despite the discontent, Hanwoori Hall is anticipating improvement.
“We are making efforts to expand the eligible districts in the Seoul metropolitan area,” said a correspondent of Hanwoori Hall, regarding the new dormitories that will complete construction by the spring semester of 2016.
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