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Walsh Hall residents reflect on time in Pangborn Hall

| Tuesday, September 20, 2016

This year, Walsh Hall’s residents are exploring a new side of campus as their home on God Quad undergoes renovations, including repairs to the heating system, plumbing system and chipped paint. For the next eight months, the “Wild Women of Walsh” are be living in Pangborn Hall, located on South Quad.

WEB - 20160919, 20160920, Michael Yu, Pangborn, WalshMichael Yu | The Observer

“I think it’s very different than living in Walsh, but I think we’re making the best of it,” hall president junior Aly Sonnen said. “It’s all been a lot better than we expected it to be. There are cool things that come with living in a different dorm, like you get to see a different side of campus.”

The transition into a new building, however, did not come without its challenges, Sonnen said. 

“I think everyone was pretty bummed about the whole move,” she said. “All the upperclassmen were coming in with a very different attitude than they normally would come in with. So we’ve had to work on making everyone really excited about the year again.”

One aspect of Walsh that many residents miss most is its central location.

“It’s just farther than Walsh was from everything,” junior Maryanne Fisher said.

Sonnen said she misses the view from Walsh.

“God Quad on game days is so beautiful and fun,” Sonnen said.“I used to always wake up to the band on game days and not having that is sad.” 

Sonnen also said she misses the layout of Walsh.

“Walsh — the building itself — really was good at fostering community because it’s all just, like, one long hallway and all of our common space is in the basement, so you have to run into people,” she said. “That’s kind of been a challenge in Pangborn. It’s set up really differently so you don’t run into people as much.”

Despite the change in location and layout, the women of Walsh have continued to carry on their spirit of “Walsh Love” in their new home, according to Sonnen. 

“Our rector always says, ‘Safety, inclusion and community’ all the time,” Sonnen said. “Those are like her buzzwords that we have to continue. We are going to try to grow rather than resist the change.”

For the freshmen who are a part of the Walsh community living in Pangborn, Sonnen said she expects they will be pleasantly surprised upon moving into Walsh next year.

“The freshmen have been doing really well,” she said. “They don’t know anything different so they’ll just be really excited next year.”

Junior Emily Schoenbauer thinks the women of Walsh have done a good job of carrying on the spirit of the dorm in their new home.

“With this new space we had to say, ‘So what actually is Walsh?’ and I think that our rector has just been so awesome in helping us realize what that is,” Schoenbauer said.

Sonnen said the spirit of Walsh has remained strong despite the temporary location.

“We talk about ‘Walsh Love’ all the time,” she said. “It’s just like you go out of your way to do nice things for people in Walsh because you’re a community and you’re there for each other. And you should always be building each other up.

“Walsh is our home and we love it, but it’s more about the people than the place. That’s what we’re saying this year.”

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