Times are changing at McDaniel.
While students have traditionally been separated by gender in their first year, beginning this fall the incoming Class of 2017 will experience Rouzer and Whiteford Halls as coeducational.
According to Michael Robbins, Director of Residence Life, this project has been discussed for years but the President’s Council just began discussing it more seriously last semester.
“One of the main reasons we wanted to do this is to offer first-year students a place to live where collaborative learning is on going outside the classroom,” said Beth Gerl, Vice President of Academic Affairs.
The first year residence buildings, which offer a combined occupancy of 405 students, will be coed by floor and by wing. With few exceptions, students are required to live on campus their first three years.
The change will allow for flexibility in the management of first-year classes, with regards to disproportionate numbers of males and females, according to Robbins. It will also prevent double occupancy rooms from become triples or transforming lounges into quads.
The restructuring of the first-year housing will bring changes to the current residence buildings. New carpeting and furniture will be installed in Rouzer Hall to help make it more accommodating to students.
“I’m very excited about this announcement,” said Robbins. “We believe coed housing will help freshmen adjust to college and interact more easily with students of differing backgrounds as well as forge lifelong friendships.”