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Free Laundry at Michigan State

It’s a dilemma that many college students fighting the late-night munchies have faced: Should I grab those quarters set aside for laundry and get some pizza instead?

Michigan State University will make that decision easier later this year for the 16,000 or so students living in residence halls on the East Lansing campus. The university’s Department of Residence Education and Housing Services says it’s making laundry service free for those living in on-campus student housing. The free service will begin this summer in the two residence halls open during that session. When the fall term begins, the free service will be expanded to all on-campus student housing.

“We want our students to focus on what they came here to do, and that is to successfully obtain a degree in a timely manner,” says Kathy Collins, director of the department. “We want to make this journey about the learning, not about the laundry.”

The university says students in its residence halls spend more than $1.3 million a year on laundry. The typical student spends about $90 a year on laundry—18 loads each semester. Eliminating the charge for laundry is part of an effort to make on-campus living more appealing so that more students remain in residence halls. 

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