When housing fills up at small colleges, employee basements, hotels can be dorm alternatives

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Incoming freshman Gabrielle Szczerbiak isn't getting the traditional college housing experience she expected. She will have a roommate, though, but there are also rules — no boys in the bedrooms and a curfew.

The rules aren't being imposed by a dorm — they're actually the wishes of the married couple who are taking in the 18-year-old after she got stalled on a rural Utah university's housing waitlist.

An enrollment boom has prompted Southern Utah University in Cedar City to urge neighbors and employees to house the dormless.

It's not uncommon for a small college to get creative when campus housing fills up, sending freshmen to such dorm alternatives as local hotels or rival schools.

But housing officials say they've never heard of a college putting up students in the spare bedrooms of employees and residents.