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Residence life calls for women to transfer to Pangborn in preparation for new women’s dorm

| Monday, February 11, 2019

Starting next year, Pangborn Hall will serve as interim housing for undergraduate women before they transition to the new women’s dorm opening in the fall of 2020, Heather Rakoczy Russell, associate vice president for Residential Life, announced in a statement Friday.

“Residential Life is seeking at least 30 current undergraduate women [rising seniors, juniors and sophomores] who would choose to transfer to Pangborn for 2019-2020, and then we would assign another 70 new students — incoming first-year and transfer students — to round out the community,” Russell said in the statement.

Joseph Han | The Observer

Moving these students into Pangborn will both ease overcrowding in women’s halls and prepare a community for the new dorm, Russell said. Pangborn is anticipated to hold anywhere from 100 to 131 residents. However, the dorm’s full capacity is 182 students.

“At this time, we have a bit of an overcrowding problem on the women’s side,” Russell said. “The way it manifested itself this past academic year is that we had a waitlist for [both women and men] … who needed housing.”

While Pangborn will be a temporary home for its residents, Breyan Tornifolio, director of residential life for rector recruitment and hiring, said it is important to recognize the community as a new and permanent hall of Notre Dame.

“There will be welcome weekend, there will be hall council — it will function as a hall,” Tornifolio said. “So, women who might be looking for a fresh start, who want to take some leadership roles, this is their opportunity.”

Amanda Springstead, current rector of Howard Hall, will serve as the rector for the new community beginning next year.

“I am honored to be trusted with stewarding this new community,” Springstead said in an email to Howard Hall residents Sunday. “And I am excited to see what gifts and joys the next few years will hold.”

Tornifolio said the new hall represents an opportunity to help build a community from scratch.

“I think that we have visionaries on our campus who are going to jump at that chance to be able to create something,” Tornifolio said.

Russell echoed these sentiments in her assessment of the new community’s future.

“The women who will be attracted to this are perhaps some of those who aren’t having a positive experience in their current hall,” Russell said. “But it also might be some people who are pioneers, who are looking for an adventure and want to be the first to start something”

Russell said residential life is offering several incentives to women to transfer into the dorm. The first 10 seniors who apply to transfer, as well as resident assistants, are guaranteed singles. The first 10 juniors who apply are also guaranteed singles, and the first 10 sophomores who apply are guaranteed housing. The $500 per-semester fee for all singles will be waived for students who choose to transfer to Pangborn, she said.

The lottery number for room picks will be “tied to application order,” Russell said in the statement.

Pangborn is expected to offer 15 doubles as singles for seniors, 10 additional singles, 40 doubles, three two-room quads, two three-room quads, two two-room triples as well as study rooms, a fitness area and community space.

Jonathan Retartha, director of residential life for housing operations, said students should act quickly in order to secure a spot.

“We would encourage women who are interested to act fast,” Retartha said. “We’re not filling this building, we’re not trying to cram it full. Pangborn is not a huge space. It’s a limited number of spots and we’re excited for the response that we think we’re going to get.”

Students who want to transfer into Pangborn can apply in the Home Under the Dome portal starting Feb. 11.

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About Thomas Murphy

Thomas is a sophomore in the Program of Liberal Studies, where he double minors in Business & Economics and Philosophy, Politics, and Economics. He is ideologically in favor of the Oxford Comma, and encourages readers to contact their local representatives regarding the codification of its usage.

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