Stopher, Johnson halls grow as communities

Sarah McGrath

With the first semester over, Stopher and Johnson Halls are coming into their own as living facilities for Kent State students.

Stopher and Johnson halls, which opened their doors to students at the beginning of last semester, are doing well, according to Residence Hall director Michelle Limle.

Replacing the original Stopher and Johnson Halls that were torn down in 2004, the new halls now house freshmen and honors students on co-ed floors.

Limle explains that Stopher and Johnson are two “distinctive halls,” despite their appearance as a conjoined community.

“Stopher is an all freshman dorm and Johnson is an honors dorm,” Limle said. “The staff and the Hall Council have helped to make it seem like one big community. It’s a very positive feeling.”

Both halls offer building-wide wireless Internet access, laundry and kitchen facilities and classrooms.

“There haven’t been any significant problems except for the ones you expect with a new building,” Limle explained. “There has been minor vandalism.”

“Someone took a dry erase marker and drew on the wall,” said Alyse Papania, freshman magazine journalism major. “But other than that there hasn’t been much else.”

Limle said she has been more impressed by how students reacted to incidents of vandalism and how vocal they were in their complaints.

Papania said living in Stopher Hall has been a great experience. She said she really enjoys residence hall life.

“It’s fun and I think it’s really nice compared to other dorms. There is air conditioning and a lot more room,” Papania explained. “Plus, Stopher has a really good location on campus because it’s in the middle of everything.”

Papania, who considers her room a place to relax, enjoys doing her homework in the hall’s study lounges.

“I like having a comfortable study lounge just down the hall,” she said.

Courtney Donohoe, freshman speech pathology major and honors student living in Johnson Hall, said she also benefits from the lounges on her floor.

“The study lounges on my floor are really helpful because if my roommate doesn’t want to study, I can go there instead of walking to the library,” she said.

Donohoe said having the Honors College located in Johnson Hall is another advantage to living in the residence halls.

“It’s really nice having my adviser just two floors below me,” Donohoe said. “There is always someone around to talk to or answer a question.”

Unlike some other halls on campus, Stopher and Johnson do not have a food court or cafeteria.

“One disadvantage is not having a food place in the dorm. You have to make a plan to go eat,” she said. “It is especially a pain when the weather is cold like it is now.”

Despite not having a food court, or maybe because of it, Donohoe finds Johnson to be a “wonderful learning environment.”

“It’s not that different from any other hall; it’s just bigger and more spacious,” Donohoe explained. “We still have the same problems that every other dorm has.”

Contact room and board reporter Sarah McGrath at [email protected].