The new women’s dorm, which is yet unnamed, houses 55 res­i­dents and will feature a student-run coffee shop. Carmel Kookogey | Col­legian

The new women’s dorm still needs a name, but the women living in it are excited to share their space.

Con­struction on the dor­mitory, the first new dorm on campus since 2005, is com­plete, and while fin­ishing touches are still needed, 55 res­i­dents now call it home.

“The tem­porary name is ‘New Dorm’ while we wait for a friend of the college to give a donation towards this specif­i­cally,” New Dorm House Director Rosemary Pynes explained, adding that the dorm would then be named for the donor.

Despite the lack of a name, however, the new dor­mitory is full of warmth and appeal. Com­plete with Penny’s, a coffee shop opening next week, and sur­rounded by a large outdoor space with a fire pit, Pynes says they want the areas to be open “for all the women’s dorm res­i­dents over here to use.”

Pynes described her desire to cul­tivate rela­tion­ships between the new dorm and the neigh­boring women’s res­i­dence halls, Benzing and Mauck, hoping to build “an overall Hillsdale com­munity, rather than just the New Dorm’s com­munity.”

“We’re focused on our res­i­dents, but also working outward,” Pynes said. “While we build up the dorm, we really want to encourage the girls to build up each other as well.”

As a part of this ini­tiative, the dorm’s coffee shop, which is sep­arate from Bon Appétit, will also be run and staffed by stu­dents. Manager Emily Barnum, ’18, called this “a unique enter­prise.”

Asso­ciate Dean of Women Rebekah Dell explained that this concept of a dorm coffee shop has “been sug­gested on and off for years,” but the new dorm was the “perfect oppor­tunity” to implement it.

Named for Pres­ident Larry Arnn’s wife, Penny, it is set to be a study spot with high-quality coffee, emu­lating Penny Arnn’s hos­pi­tality.

“She is the picture of warmth and hos­pi­tality and grace and virtue,” Barnum said.

Penny’s, which will be sup­plied by Uncommon Coffee out of Saugatuck, Mich., is a “slower” alter­native to A.J.’s Cafe, Barnum says.

“We want to offer food items that are not available at A.J.’s and Jitters,” she said. “We also want to serve a tiny bite-sized snack or cookie with every drink, kind of a European expe­rience. It’s not just about meeting your caf­feine needs. It’s less util­i­tarian, and more about the expe­rience.”

Barnum also says an espresso bar will include stools so stu­dents can talk to their baristas, and she con­firmed that Liberty Bucks will be accepted at the new dorm’s coffee shop.

Dell explained that the dorm was built to allow more sopho­mores to con­tinue living in a dorm com­munity. She said that the com­munity bath­rooms were a central part of this ini­tiative.

“Com­mittees found that the com­munity is strongest in the dorms that have com­munity bath­rooms… They tended to have the tightest groups with great support. We know, though, that not everyone wants a com­munity bathroom, so then we looked at our upper­classmen offerings. We realized that we actually did not offer many upper­classman female options with com­munity bath­rooms,” Dell said.

She added that the biggest goal of the dorm is to foster a “homelike envi­ronment.”

“We want this to be a space where com­munity, fel­lowship, and friendship grow, an oppor­tunity not only for the upper­classmen living there…but also that this be a res­i­dence hall that freshmen are wel­comed into, so that we can foster as much as we are able that idea of men­torship, and upper­classmen sup­porting under­classmen,” Dell said.

Barnum agreed.

“We’re really hoping that it will help foster com­munity on campus, and that everyone will feel welcome there,” she said.