Lore-ence: “Airbnb to fund Lawrentians’ dreams”

The following story is satire. All events and characters are fictional.

In recent years, Lawrence University has bought an alarming number of cardboard cutouts. From President Burstein to Papa Smurf, there are cardboard cutouts all over campus. This has become increasingly unsustainable. Lawrence is struggling to keep up with the costs and the demand, especially with the new plan to have a cutout for each member of the graduating class. Along with a diploma, each student will also receive a cardboard cutout in their visage. Recently, faculty have decided that they will cover the cost of printing and storage of the cutouts by starting a new business enterprise.

The cupola on top of Main Hall, affectionately known as the nipple of knowledge, has been unused or unoccupied for a long time. It is an iconic part of Appleton, as it can be seen from great distances. It has solely been a symbol of Lawrence, but now it is available as something more. Starting next fall, the nipple of knowledge will become an Airbnb. 

The nipple’s conversion into an Airbnb will require a makeover of the interior. In order for it to qualify as a space worth using, it needs to be insulated. Furniture, such as a bed, dresser and minifridge need to be put in.

In order to get the materials for this makeover, faculty will be scouring the donation bins at the end of Spring Term. Seniors often leave behind their college belongings as they make a dash for freedom. Mattress pads will be used for insulation, abandoned mini-fridges will adorn the edges of the room and stray string lights will lace the ceiling of the iconic dome. There are a lot of things left over at the end of the year, and higher ups believe that, based on prior years, there will be a bounty to choose from to outfit the cupola. 

The Campus Safety team is unsure of how feasible this is. There are some security concerns with this venture. First of all, temporary IDs must be administered to all visitors so that they can not only access Main Hall on the weekends, but also so that they can enter Ormsby Hall for shower, vending machine and kitchen usage. Campus Safety is unsure if this is the wisest decision for students, as they may not like having unpredictable people in their dorm halls and showers. 

There is also the question of how profitable this whole experience will be. Those in charge of the decision predict that people will pay large sums in order to stay in the nipple, as it is an iconic part of Appleton’s landscape. However, people may not like staying in a stuffy room in an academic building with poor circulation and no temperature control. However, it is believed that alumni may jump at the option for housing during alumni events. After all, all Lawrentians love the nipple.   

It is very possible that this is a poor idea. However, Lawrence and Lawrentians alike are not willing to sacrifice their insatiable desires for cardboard cutouts. As it is an important part of Lawrence, and this seems to be the main solution, even those who have doubts have to admit that they are willing to give it a shot. Rumor has it that unoccupied rooms may follow suit if Main Hall is a successful venture. Only time will tell if this is a good idea.