In what seemed to come out of nowhere, a new freshman dorm was built in the heart of Linden Lane. Dubbed “HolyOak Hall,” this new structure will provide an additional residence hall for the increasing number of first-year students. The structure was built over a period of a couple weeks, which stands in contrast to the new athletic complex, which should be done any day now (we hope). We were fortunate enough to be able to take a look inside and share all the details that we found.
HolyOak Hall comes equipped with all the necessary luxuries for a comfortable first year, such as communal bathrooms, forced quads, and no overhead lighting. It’s broken up into three beautiful structures that really represent the stages of freshman year. The first part represents the beginning of freshman year: residents of that section have Gateways games built into their schedule throughout the year to build community. The second part represents the middle of freshman year: residents in this section constantly swap roommates every week when they realize they can’t live with each other’s daily habits. Finally, the third part represents the end of freshman year: residents in this section are given much more freedom than the other sections, but a staff member present at all times is there to remind each resident that they are, in fact, still freshmen. This new type of dynamic living community is sure to enrich its residents with a breathtaking quality of life.
The Eggplant reached out to several members of the Holy Cross community to seek their input on the new dorm sparking conversation on the hill. Martin Doyle ’18 stated, “I love this new resident hall. I really wish I could’ve been so close to the guardhouse my first year.” Another student, Jared Cone ’17, said, “I guess a new residence hall is nice, maybe I was just never fated to see a real Arts center.” Victor Stevens ’19 said, “It was really cool that we got to volunteer to build this hall instead of hiring another outside company. It saved the College a lot of money that we won’t get to see.” Clearly, the voices on campus were very receptive to this surprise endeavor.
The class of 2021 will take the maiden voyage in this revolutionary new dorm. Though it has its quirks, including no electricity or running water, it is sure to be a hit. HolyOak Hall is still looking to be staffed with Resident Assistants to help with the transitional process for a fourth hall. Prospective RA Theodore Johnson is looking forward to building a staff. He said, “I mean we’re probably going to have to document all the uses of candles, smoke, and other basic survival techniques, but I think it’ll be a fun learning experience.”
Be prepared to hear more about this building, as well as have a chance to live in it if you become a Resident Assistant or when you inevitably get a terrible housing time.