New Franklin opens to students

Story by Stella Childress, Contributing writer

New Franklin Residential College welcomed students for the first time this fall after more than a year of construction and $28.2 million.

The new building includes common areas and TV lounges, a large game room overlooking the lobby, residential rooms similar to Lee Clark Residential College and a common room connected to the lobby that can be divided into two spaces.

“The versatility allows students to make the space fit their needs,” said Jessica Dotson, residence director of New Franklin.

During the first week of the semester, residents have been active within the college.

“I have seen a Super Smash Brothers tournament, board and card game parties, study sessions, late night movies and various meetings take place in our main commons,” Dotson said.

In the new expansive kitchens, resident advisers Taylor Miller and Erik Anderson held an event called “Pannycake Party” and made traditional Norwegian pancakes and bacon. Dotson said there were 50 residents in attendance.

Three of eight wings are reserved solely for honors students and there is classroom for honors seminars on the first floor, creating a Living Learning Community as a trademark of the residential college.

“Having Honors wings creates a true living and learning community, where Honors students actually share a living space with the same students with whom they are sharing classes, research projects and study abroad,” said Warren Edminster, Honors College director.

Edminster said the classroom on the first floor has already been used for multiple honors college events.

“I really enjoy walking over there to teach my class each morning,” he said.

To celebrate the opening of New Franklin, there will be a ribbon cutting ceremony Sept. 8 at 4:30 p.m. in the foyer of New Franklin.

“It feels new and full of potential,” Dotson said.