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(WBIR) The University of Tennessee is now offering a year-long housing option for students beginning this fall.

UT officials hope the new option boosts enrollment and use of campus facilities during the summer. The change could make the summer term a better option for students, which could improve UT's four-year graduation rate, bolstering the university's goal of becoming a Top 25 public research university.

UT Housing said it's seeking to attract more graduate and international students staying in Knoxville during the summer to take classes or participate in local internships. Year-long contracts will be available for all current students, including freshman, for the fall.

The university will offer 12-month housing in Laurel Hall located at 1615 Laurel Avenue. Apartments in that building include a kitchen, living room, bedroom and bathroom. Students will also be able to live in these apartments throughout all academic breaks.

MORE: 12-month housing program information

Rates are per semester, and the summer rates are rolled into the fall and spring semester housing payment rates.

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