St. Mary's Students Cleared to Board Floating Dorm

Students to spend fall semester on a cruise ship

After a few delays, about 240 students at St. Mary's College of Maryland started moving aboard their new floating dorm Tuesday afternoon.

The freshmen and sophomores were displaced last month, after black mold was found inside their dorms.

Since then, the school has been putting the students up in nearby hotels. But some students said even with the help of shuttle buses, it was difficult getting to and from classes and campus dining, with one of the hotels as far as 20 miles away.

Move-in was scheduled for Monday, but it was delayed after the ship failed a Coast Guard inspection. School officials said the ship needed to be moved out to deeper water.

After an overnight maneuver, the ship passed inspection late Tuesday morning. Students were allowed to start moving in as of 2 p.m., depending on their class schedules.

The 300-foot vessel named the "Sea Voyager" will be home for the students for the remainder of the fall semester. According to school officials, the cost of keeping them on the ship was comparable to hotels; and being docked in the bay, the students will be right next to campus.

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