This summer, I graduated from Fresno State with a bachelor of arts degree in criminology.
I live in an apartment close to campus. It’s not the greatest, but it’s all I can afford. I don’t suffer from a vermin infestation or massive mold, like some of the renters in The Bee’s special investigation, but my apartment has roaches, mold above the shower, the water is shut off regularly due to clogged pipes, and when the air conditioning unit goes out, I can barely stand the heat.
I recently started my first full-time job. I hoped to move somewhere better, but due to increasing tuition and cost of living, I took out student loans. So, I’ll be staying put. In school, I worked two jobs to make ends meet and even then, I was evicted once.
It’s hard enough to focus on the demands of school without worrying about the water getting shut off or roaches getting into the only food you had to last you through the week. I imagine my experience is more common among Fresno State students than people think. Students are struggling to get through college and often have to settle for sub-par living conditions. That just doesn’t seem right.
Selena Salas, Fresno