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Last Updated: Wednesday, 28 April, 2004, 08:59 GMT 09:59 UK
Broke student 'slept in library'
New York City
Life is expensive in the 'city that never sleeps'
A student in the US has been given free accommodation after it was found he had been sleeping in the college library for eight months to save money.

Steven Stanzak began spending the night in the basement of New York University's main library last September, unable to afford the city's high cost of living.

He washed in the toilets and kept his clothes and books in a locker.

Officials only found out by reading Mr Stanzak's own website.

'Everybody sleeps in the library'

The library is open 24 hours a day and security guards reportedly paid little attention to the student, who slept on chairs for six hours a night.

Mr Stanzak, 20, said that despite receiving $15,000 (8,500) a year from a scholarship and working 30 hours a week, he could not afford the money for a room on top of his tuition fees.

An undergraduate studying creative writing, he recorded his experiences on the web, becoming something of a campus celebrity.

University administrators said they had taken Mr Stanzak's claims at face value and had offered him a room for the rest of the summer.

NYU spokesman John Beckman said: "Seventy per cent of our students are on financial aid. If they have a problem they choose to come to talk to us and we find a way to help them.

"This person chose a pretty unique solution to his issues."

Last year, New York was ranked America's most expensive city and 11th in the world.

Founded in 1831 with 158 undergraduates, New York University has expanded to cater for more than 48,000 students.

Its mascot is the bobcat which, unlike Mr Stanzak, is renowned for being active mainly at night.

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