While Hillsdale College spent the summer breaking ground on the new athletic center, renovating dormitories, and repaving sidewalks, Saga, Inc., took on a new role of managing the dormitories’ laundry system.
Saga has replaced the old appliances in all college dormitories with Maytag commercial washers and dryers. These new appliances will allow Saga to incorporate a new high-tech payment option: Charger Laundry Change.
Instead of paying in quarters, students will be able to swipe their student IDs at the time of payment. Students will refill their laundry change online or at the Saga office.
Kevin Kirwan, general manager of Saga, explained that installation of the new appliances allow for a more efficient laundry service for students.
“Students will have more flexibility with this second option of payment,” he said.
House Director of the Suites Matthew Duquette sees this improvement as a benefit to his dorm and the entire campus.
“This new technology looks pretty slick,” he said. “I think it will make this process more convenient because it eliminates rolls of quarters. ”
At last year’s Student Leadership Weekend, students gave feedback to the college on how it could improve college facilities. Students complained about the slow response time to fix broken washers and the frequent quarter jams.
The college approached Saga when the college’s contract with a previous laundry service expired. Saga gladly accepted the proposal and the new responsibility.
“We wanted to make it easier for the students to do laundry” Kirwan said. “When there is a problem with the appliance we are ready to fix it: no more waiting three days for a contractor from Lansing to drive down to fix the problem.”
Saga will eventually convert all laundry appliances to Charger Laundry Change. In a few weeks, the Suites will be the first dormitory to host the updated payment option.
Simone Lunt, a transfer sophomore student living in Niedfeldt Residence, was pleased to hear of this new payment option.
“I’m sick of putting quarters in the washing machine because I never have enough quarters and the machines don’t take dimes or nickels,” she said. “I would really appreciate being able to swipe ours cards to wash our clothes.”
Kirwan is undecided on what dorm is next.
“The order in which we migrate will depend on the technological aspects in connecting to the college server,” he said.
All improvements will be completed by the end of this school year.
Lunt did express concern that this new technological improvements could raise prices.
“I think this is a fantastic idea,” she said. “However, I don’t know how I feel about it going up in price.”
Kirwan said that there are no plans to raise laundry prices.
“As of now, it will remain at 75 cents a load, which is a bargain.”