Gathered in the newly renovated Alice Lloyd Residence Hall on Tuesday afternoon, students, faculty and alumni celebrated the building’s re-opening and discussed its transformation.
The ceremony was the first of several events commemorating the Lloyd Hall Scholars Program’s 50th anniversary. A series of speakers, including University President Mary Sue Coleman, spoke to the significance of residential life and the Residential Life Initiative, a University program that was launched in 2004 to upgrade University residence halls.
“We’re constantly working to provide the very best facilities for our students and our faculty,” Coleman said. “Great facilities support great scholars.”
The renovation of Alice Lloyd was the fourth project undertaken as a result of the initiative, coming on the heels of updates to Mosher-Jordan, Stockwell and Couzens Residence Halls. East Quad Residence Hall is currently under construction, and South Quad Residence Hall has been publicly announced as the next renovation candidate.
University Housing Director Linda Newman said the primary purpose of the renovations is to enhance the University experience for students.
“Our celebration today is not just about the building,” Newman said. “It’s about our commitment to students. It’s about providing facilities and programming that help students make the most of their University experience.”
After a 15-month long renovation, Alice Lloyd holds nearly 520 students and includes renovated rooms, bathrooms, community areas and learning spaces. The hall also features unique spaces for LHSP, including a dance and fitness studio and a gallery space.
“Each of the residence halls has rich histories and traditions,” Newman said. “Alice Lloyd is full of people with artistic endeavor and gives a place a totally different flavor.”
Coleman said students and faculty often take for granted the impact of the namesakes of the buildings, noting that Alice Crocker Lloyd — who served as the University’s dean of women 1930 to 1950 — greatly influenced the goals of residence halls.
“She got it,” Coleman said. “She knew how to support Michigan students and she helped them succeed. Just as individuals such as Alice Lloyd shaped Michigan, so too has the residence hall that bears her name.”
E. Royster Harper, the University’s vice president of student affairs, also spoke at the event and said she admires Coleman’s vision for residential life.
“Walking in this building makes me want to be a student again,” Harper said. “This is home, where students make life-long friends and where they come to appreciate different ideas, different cultures and different personalities.”
Nursing junior Amanda Wenger, who spoke on behalf of the Lloyd Hall Scholars Program, echoed Harper’s sentiments and spoke of her experience living in University residence halls.
“I hope that we can preserve the heart of the old hall even as we grow into our new space,” Wenger said. “Lloyd has always been a safe place for me. When I remember college, this is what I’ll think of.”
Kinesiology sophomore Bailey Palladino, the president of the Residence Halls Association, also emphasized that residence halls are more than just a place to live.
“These are the places where memories and lasting friendships are made, and Alice Lloyd is conducive of that,” said Palladino.
In an interview after the event, Al Comfort, an area maintenance coordinator who worked on the renovations, said the use of modern day technology in the residence hall is vital for students and sustainability.
“Bringing it up to the modern day with technology for the students is a big deal,” Comfort said. “The old systems were getting really expensive to maintain. A lot of the machinery now is so much more efficient, it’s just amazing.”
Comfort said all the Residence Life Initiative renovations undergo three years of work: the first to develop a conceptual design, the second to make blue prints and the third to complete the physical construction.
“As far as the planning goes, we learned a lot from every renovation,” he said. “Everyone pretty much went a little better than the ones before. We learned from our previous mistakes, so (Alice Lloyd) went really well.”
LSA sophomore Laura Goslin, a member of LHSP and Alice Lloyd resident, said she likes the hall’s new amenities and design that make it unique to LHSP.
“It’s got a nice feel,” Goslin said. “It really caters to our creative community. I honestly don’t think I would change anything about it.”