As a college student, you’ve probably been asked the same five questions everyone seems to be infatuate with asking such as: “What is your major?” “What do you want to do later in life?” “Have you studied abroad?” and my favorite “What is your favorite part about college?” For some reason my answer to the latter question seems to bewilder some, but my absolute favorite part about college is the culture of living in a residential hall and the memories I now have that I’m able to look back on and think of the “good ol’ times”. I’ve had the enormous pleasure of living in Mckean Hall for my entire college career (no, I haven’t repeated my first year over and over again, I’ve just happily lived in Mckean my first year and then have worked as a Resident Assistant for the building ever since). Whenever I tell my peers or even new faces on this campus that I live in Mckean Hall or that I’ve lived there for three years now, I always receive a facial expression of pity and hear responses like “Dude that really sucks”. It surely doesn’t help when the official newspaper for the College publishes articles where they identify the Mckean Residential Hall as the one that “smells like mildew, but it’s where the party is at”.
Mckean Hall has had an awful reputation for as long as I’ve been here, and I’m pretty sure it can be dated back even further, but has anybody really tried to understand why? Because I can tell you after living in that hall for three years straight that there is absolutely nothing wrong with the building. The long-standing reputation is the only substance of any kind that fills the halls with its “terror” and “disgusting appeal”, not the infrastructure, not its residents, not its Resident Assistants, and not Rollins College’s buzz of being a “party school”. Every single college or university across the United States faces the dilemma of having underage first years drinking, partying, vandalizing, you name it. This is not a problem singular to Mckean Hall and it is definitely an issue one can experience in almost any other residential hall on this campus.
Every first year dorm on this campus faces relatively the same conflicts, but why is it that people only think of Mckean when they think of first year’s parties? Because with the existence of a reputation, gossiping and bad-mouthing about certain events and certain people becomes easier to do and easier to believe.
Mckean Hall was designed by Hugh Mckean, a former student of Rollins College and a fellow X-club member, and when he designed this building, he did so by keeping future students in mind and making sure that they could have the best possible residential hall experience. He wanted to make sure that all of Mckean Hall’s residents could answer the question “What is your favorite part about college?” with “living on campus, living in Mckean Hall”. I completely and wholeheartedly adore this hall and I’ve been able to create great relationships with friends and residents with all that Mckean has to offer. From its thirteen comfortable living rooms, to the countless programs, to the wonderful Resident Assistants, and to the amazing memories effortlessly made, Mckean Hall you are my home and I wish that everyone could understand you.