Construction on Galloway is scheduled to begin immediately following the end of the 2018 Spring semester, but will not be finished until fall of 2020. This means the men of Galloway will be “exiled,” as the Associate Dean of Men Jeffery Rogers put it, for an entire year before they can return to their “homedorm.”
In planning for the renovations, the deans spoke with the student leaders within Galloway about what they wanted to see in their new home.
The new Galloway will feature more study areas and common areas and will keep its communal bathrooms. It will also include a new outdoor hangout space where residents can continue to host their weekly Thursday gatherings. This is a tradition which usually involves a bonfire, grilled meat, cigars, and an eclectic mix of Frank Sinatra and Taylor Swift music.
In the interim, most of Galloway’s current residents will move into Whitley Residence, which is currently a female residence. Meanwhile Whitley residents will move to the new unnamed women’s dorm, according to Carolyn Milligan, assistant to the vice-president of student affairs.
However, Whitley can house only 49 of Galloway’s current 88 residents, so some residents will have to move into off campus housing.
“Galloway dorm has a lot of guys that have really been blessed with living there,” Rogers said. “There is a sadness and an excitement in them. They know they will never be able to back to Galloway as it is, but there is an excitement because it will be new.”
Sophomore Residence Assistant Ethan Visser said he loves the quirky camaraderie and community that he has found in Galloway over the past two years, something he attributes both to the shared experience of living in the most rundown dorm on campus as well as the strength of his dorm-mate’s character.
“I think a lot of guys in Galloway are not worried about how they look and are unapologetically themselves, which is why Galloway is pretty strange,” Visser said. “But I love being a part of that, and I respect that in others. I think also faith is a big part of Galloway, and there’s a lot of humility and willingness to serve. I see a lot of all that in Galloway and also just good fun.”
He and his dorm-mates are confident that in even the coming year of construction and separation, the spirit of Galloway will remain as strong and close as ever.
“The character comes from the guys, not the building,” Visser said. “The deans are already talking to the RA’s, who will be staying about keeping up the traditions and culture. I’m not worried.”