Dorm Dive: A Quieter Side to Delta Upsilon

Zach Schmidt

Resident senior and DU brother Zach Schmidt. (Cristina Matamoros/The Phoenix)

Whilst the Delta Upsilon house is known to host fraternity meetings and events, it is less well-known that it also hosts a resident, Zach Schmidt, a senior who lives in a single room on the second floor.

Traditionally, a DU brother resides in the house every year, an arrangement based on whoever is the first to volunteer. According to Schmidt, though, “usually people don’t really want to live in the room.” For Schmidt however, cost was a large incentive, as living in the DU house is cheaper than living in a dorm. He easily transitioned into living in the house this year, since he had lived in his room over the past two summers while he worked in Philadelphia.

Initially, he thought noise would be an issue since the DU house hosts social gatherings on Thursday and Saturday, generally open to the entire campus. But being surrounded by people in the house has its benefits. “I don’t feel like I’m disconnected from campus in any way,” Schmidt said, despite being the lone resident in the house. Surprisingly, he claims the noise is barely audible as two floors separate his room and the basement where the music is played.

As with any other dormitory, there are disadvantages to living in a frat house. “I miss having the dorm community,” Schmidt said. He finds an easy solution in frequenting Alice Paul and Wharton, where many of his friends reside. Certain amenities that are fundamental to conventional dorms, such as laundry facilities, are absent in the DU house. Every few weeks, Schmidt utilizes friends’ dormitories to do laundry. “In the big scheme of things, it’s manageable,” he said. A microwave and a George Foreman grill which sits on his bookshelf replace the need for a kitchen.

In terms of decoration, adornment is largely limited to the walls save for a large metal Don Juan lamp that Schmidt jokes is an “artifact of DU.” An American flag flanks the wall above his bed, and on the side opposite is a Chris Brown poster from Goodwill which he claims he purchased for a friend.

Schmidt attempts to create a comfortable space to relax with his friends, with a large recliner and a television taking up some of the compact space. “I have stuff around [the perimeter of] the room. I want people to feel like they can come in here and hang out,” he said. Large windows brightly illuminate the room, and adjoining is a sizeable ensuite, which does not make Schmidt’s living arrangement all too unpleasant or atypical.

Schmidt does not think living in the DU house has caused the fraternity to take over his final year of college. Since he also holds on-campus jobs and is involved with Learning 4 Life, he feels he can keep DU from burgeoning onto all aspects of his life.

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