An NYU student captured the shocking moment her dorm room ceiling decided to “take a break,” and the viral footage has people side-eyeing the state of the university’s dorms.
Maya (@carpetstainz), a 19-year-old student at NYU, gained over 815,000 views, 124,000 likes and 700 comments when she uploaded the startling ceiling collapse to her account.
While we’ve seen shocking college moments go viral before — like the rising freshman who nearly missed a $104,000 scholarship in her unopened acceptance letter — this footage is shedding light on the state of old, run-down dorms.
Much like the renter who claims to have caught her landlord in a skeezy security deposit scam, Maya’s video is serving as a cautionary tale to apartment- and dorm-dwellers everywhere, especially those living in prewar New York City buildings.
The video — filmed within Rubin Hall, which is priced at around $4,600 per semester — begins with Maya looking wide-eyed into the camera, her hand clapped over her mouth in disbelief.
She then reveals what appears to be a sagging ceiling in her bathroom. “Oh my God, oh my God,” a voice cries from behind the camera — cries that intensify as the ceiling begins to droop further.
“What should we do? Are you filming this?” the students can be heard asking in the background.
Finally, with a crack from the ceiling and a scream from the witnesses, the plaster completely collapses, shattering on the tiled bathroom floor.
According to Maya’s caption, the video was filmed prior to Rubin Hall’s Passive House renovation, which will be closing the dorm from May 2023 through August 2024, and will be providing the building with air conditioning, while also improving air quality.
Rubin Hall, which was built in the 1920s as a luxury hotel, has long been considered one of the most rustic dorms belonging to the university. Built to run on fuel and steam, and provide cooling and ventilation only through its windows, the building currently lacks any ductwork that could provide air-conditioning to students.
Because of these conditions, the dorm is one of the cheapest options for NYU students, who can expect to pay anywhere from $6,100 to $12,900 per semester to live in other dorm halls.
But all that might change with the upcoming renovations, which have students worried about affordability options.
“At a university where the average cost of tuition has increased by nearly 12% in the past five years, NYU should be looking for ways to make housing more affordable — not less,” writes Washington Square News, NYU’s independent student newspaper.
“… this is what you’re living in?”
TikTokers were shocked and upset by the footage — many of whom were familiar with the state of NYU’s dorms, especially Rubin Hall.
“This is beyond unacceptable for nyu its enraging,” wrote @silizzzle.
“y’all pay so much money and this is what you’re living in?🥲” commented @courttrenee.
“I got electrocuted and dropped a few feet in the elevator in Rubin ✨✨✨” commented @lilabethmusic.
“$4500 a month core ✨💅🏻” added @lunestelle.
While renovations will certainly help improve living conditions for Rubin Hall residents — since no one should have to endure collapsing ceiling plaster and poor air quality — it’s unfortunate that doing so will eliminate NYU students’ lower-cost options.
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