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Kenyon Celebrates the Opening of New Apartments

Kenyon Celebrates the Opening of New Apartments

By Rebecca Dann

Members of the Board of Trustees, professors, deans, students and President S. Georgia Nugent convened around the new North Campus Apartments this past Friday, Oct. 29 to watch the cutting of the purple ribbon and listen to the vast list of benefits that this new housing option will bring to Kenyon College.

At 4:15 p.m., North Campus Apartments resident Karuna Ramcharran ’12 cut the purple ribbon and the dedication began. Dean of Students Hank Toutain spoke first. Four new apartments are now already open and in use by Kenyon students, he said.

By the end of January, they expect to have two new housing units available for student applications, and by the fall of 2013, a total of 21 houses should be ready, completing the construction project.

Toutain explained to the audience why the addition of the new and improved houses would benefit Kenyon’s ranking in comparison to other institutions.

As Kenyon continues to gain respect for its academic programs and opportunities, its housing should continue to improve at the same rate, according to Toutain. Kenyon should not only offer challenging opportunities, but also stellar facilities, especially housing, he said.

“Kenyon should not lose students because its housing options are not as nice as various other institutions,” Toutain said. “In addition to adding a competitive advantage, increasing housing capacity would result in less density in other housing institutions.”

As the College continues to expand its student population, it will need to accommodate this greater influx. With these new houses, Kenyon will appeal to a greater number of prospective students, Toutain said.

In addition to Toutain’s welcoming speech, Head Community Advisor Georgina Leslie ’12 spoke to the audience on behalf of the students who currently reside in the new houses. “We get to have a different living experience than the rest of the students,” she said. The houses are like no other residential building or house offered on the Kenyon campus.

The houses look, on the inside and out, like “real houses” – nothing like a typical college dorm, Leslie said. Instead of small apartments located within the houses, large rooms are available, along with common rooms, utilities and a kitchen. Leslie said that people walk into the houses, take one quick scan around the first floor and say, “This is a real house!”

After Leslie spoke, Toutain stepped up again to thank the various contributors that made this new housing project possible. He said that this construction could never have happened without generous financial support from Kenyon’s alumni, parents association and trustees.

Once Toutain made his concluding marks, he invited several students to go up to the podium and cut the large purple ribbon that hung in front of one of the new houses.

The audience applauded, and Toutain invited all the guests inside to explore the newly decorated houses, where the residents offered tours.

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