For its 48 years of providing housing for thousands of Troy students, Alumni Hall — which is set to be demolished this summer and replaced with a new building– will receive a grand farewell in an event hosted by the Resident Housing Association.
RHA will host a block party on April 28 beginning at 4 p.m. on the lawn in front of Clements and Alumni halls.
“It is the last chance to get together and celebrate before the end of the semester and to see Alumni standing,” said RHA president Caitlin Mock, a sophomore from Samson majoring in English language arts in secondary education major. “As RHA, we feel that it’s necessary to commemorate the existence of a long standing hall and the residents and the resident assistants who last lived there.”
“We will also have a special treat for the Alumni (resident assistant) staff,” said Erica Rousseau, area coordinator for east campus.
The Alumni resident assistants will be recognized and thanked at the program for their work and service. “It is to commemorate and celebrate Alumni itself and also to celebrate a new beginning for Troy,” Rousseau said.
Mock said that Alumni Hall represents the growth of the university and also acts as a window into Troy’s past. Rousseau compared Alumni Hall to a brotherhood where residents live in camaraderie and have one another’s backs.
Different residence halls will be hosting games like dodge ball, tug of war and soccer.
Sodexo will be catering hot dogs, hamburgers and cake. A DJ will be providing the music.
“Students will have time to relieve stress before finals, see their friends, and celebrate living on campus and get free food,” Rousseau said.
“Alumni means home,” said Dakota Punzel, a senior sport and fitness management major from Elkhart, Ind., and a resident assistant at Alumni. “College is a place of instability but at the end of the day you come back to Alumni. It gives that solid foundation and consistency.”
“When I first moved here, I realized that it was not as bad as rumored. There is a strong sense of community and that makes up for everything else it is lacking.”
Punzel remembered moments from move-in week when Troy alumni showed their sons the rooms they lived in when they were at Troy and expressed disappointment over the loss of historical aspects as such.
“Alumni signifies Troy to me,” said Sadaris Williams, area coordinator for the west campus. Williams, who currently lives in Alumni, has lived there during his undergraduate years and also worked as a resident assistant in the building.
“A few years back when one of my fraternity brothers got married, everyone came back to Alumni and everyone was staying with me,” Williams said, recalling his favorite Alumni moment. “We all sat together, talked about the old days and did a lot of reminiscing.”
Williams said that he is filled with mixed emotions regarding the forthcoming demolition. “I am sad that we are losing a valuable mark of history of Troy but ecstatic about the future and growth.”
Rousseau, on the other hand, said that she is not sad about it being demolished because the university needs to be in line with what the students need which are suite-style dormitories that are more green and sustainable.
“It [traditional dorms] is not what students want anymore,” she said.
Herbert Reeves, dean of student services, said that even though the new building will cost students more, the demand for on-campus housing will not be affected because students are willing to pay for those additional amenities.
“If you go to any college campus, nobody is building traditional dorms anymore,” he said. Reeves added that because today’s society has students coming from homes where they are used to having their own rooms and bathrooms and not sharing things, even with their siblings , the university is “building what the market demands.”
Hamil, Gardner and Alumni halls are currently the only traditional style dorms on campus where residents have to share a community bathroom.