Student Amazon orders flood on-campus mailrooms

In this photo, packages are pictured in a UConn mail room. The university has received about four times as many packages as usual this fall, university spokesperson Stephanie Reitz said. (Mei Buzzell/The Daily Campus)

An avalanche of Amazon packages has overwhelmed mailrooms across UConn’s Storrs campus, according to university officials.

“As I understand it, we received about four times as many packages as usual this fall,” university spokesperson Stephanie Reitz said. “They range from small packages to very large boxes containing mini-fridges and other sizeable items.”

Reitz and assistant director of building services, Tracy Cree, both attributed much of the increased volume to the popularity of Amazon Prime among UConn students. Cree said “about half” of the university’s incoming packages are from Amazon.

The United States Post Office branch in Mansfield has kept its staff working on shifts until 3 a.m. to handle the more than 3,000 packages per day that are arriving in Storrs, according to Cree.

UConn mailrooms have added more shifts and personnel in the larger mailrooms on campus as well, Cree said, in an effort to continue processing the mountain of packages coming in.

“We are currently on the verge of being caught up to (Wednesday)’s mail,” Cree said late Thursday afternoon.

Mailroom officials continue to urge students to make sure their legal names and correctly formatted dorm addresses are listed on any incoming packages to ensure timely processing.

“This slows the process down greatly,” Cree said. “We’d love to get all these packages to their rightful recipient.”

Students should format their shipping addresses to include first name, last name, hall name and room number, Cree said.

Despite developing a bit of a negative reputation in on-campus mailrooms, Amazon provides a service many college students consider vital – even if high volume slows things down a little bit.

Tyrell James, a transfer economics major in his first semester at UConn, has already used Amazon since arriving on campus. He had to order an access card for Pearson’s MyEconLab, which his macroeconomics class uses. James said he did not notice a significant delay in the mailroom processing the package.

As a former Amazon Prime subscriber, James is familiar with the service and still regularly uses Amazon at home. However, this was his first experience using it on campus. He has had just one negative experience in the past, and Amazon addressed it promptly.

“I can pretty much count on Amazon,” James said. “Outside of that (incident), Amazon has been pretty reliable.”

Amazon prides itself in its ability to provide students with many of the resources they need to succeed in college. The company regularly ships these items ranging from books to dorm-room appliances to universities across the country.

“You can get virtually everything you need,” Amazon spokesperson Deborah Bass said. “Amazon Student is a membership program created especially for college students, which offers free two-day shipping for 6 months, and then 50 percent off Prime.”

Student membership also gives students access to Amazon’s TV, movie and music streaming services, Bass said.


Kyle Constable is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at kyle.constable@uconn.edu. He tweets @KyleConstable.