EWU students in dorm told to temporarily relocate for inspection & cleaning

Letter states dorm will be cleaned after complaint regarding faulty conditions & health issues

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – In an update to a News4JAX I-TEAM investigation, students at a dorm on the campus of Edward Waters University have been told to temporarily move out of their rooms for the weekend so the rooms can be inspected and cleaned.

The I-TEAM first reported on Tuesday that several students at the university claim the school isn’t keeping up with on-campus housing telling us they’re dealing with mold and leaks. The school’s president says that there have been minor issues in the past, but that all have been taken care of and the claims are outdated.

RELATED: Edward Waters University president says claims of on-campus housing issues unfair, dated

On Friday, the I-TEAM received a letter from EWU, which states that on Thursday the university was notified by an officer from the City of Jacksonville Code Compliance Division that a student filed a formal complaint to the city. The complaint was regarding faulty conditions and health issues in a room in one of the dorms on campus — Richardson Hall.

Because of this complaint, administrators write, the university has hired ServPro, one of the nation’s experts in disaster recovery, microbial growth and mold remediation services, to inspect and clean the rooms in one dorm this weekend.

The letter from the university states that students in Richardson Hall will be relocated to the Microtel and Residence Inn Hotels until Monday.

News4JAX spoke with Tianiya Hall, who’s a freshman at Edward Waters University and lives in Richardson Hall. She shared photos of what appears to be mold in her cabinets and underneath a sink, which she said were taken today.

“I feel fine as long as I come back and the mold is gone,” Hall said.

She said she moved into Richardson Hall in August and has been dealing with mold ever since.

The letter states that students will need to remove their belongings from their wardrobes and drawers, and place on their bed and pack any items stored in the cabinets in the bathroom and living room in a box, which the university helped provide.

The university states: ”Removing these items will provide ServPro access to the entire unit and ensure that we are fully servicing your unit.”

A cleaning company called Sodexo will start Monday and will clean each unit a minimum of two times a day.

The university says in the letter this is being done to protect the students. It reads:

“Again, it was not our plan or intention to have to relocate any of you, however, as a result of the student complaint and subsequent visit made by the officer, we believe it to be prudent, to take this proactive measure to protect our community and the university.”

According to the letter, students will be able to return by Monday or before noon. They’re also being given $150 for food and other expenses.

About the Author:

Brie Isom joined the News4JAX team in January 2021 after spending three years covering news in South Bend, Indiana.