New spaces and responsibilities for dormers


New spaces in the dorms include a much dorm parent office with a student lounge.

YoungSeo Jo

Annie Wright Schools altered policies and arrangements in the dormitories for the new school year of 2019-20 with the growing body of student dormers. These changes include dorm hallway shifts between girls and boys, a new Dorm Parent Office, changes in dorm group activities, new prefect policies and a new lounge for the boys’ dorms. 

Last year, boys lived in the art hallway and on the 4th floor. This year, the designated boys’ space is the second floor, or the nurse’s hallway. In the last few years, there was enough space in the dormitories for most of the boys to have a single dorm room. This year, however, most of the boys and girls were assigned double dorm rooms, because of the expansion of both USG and USB departments. 

The nurse’s hallway, where the boys reside now, does not have a lounge as the rest of the dormitories have. As a solution, the dorm parents emptied a room of beds and closets and converted it into a make-shift lounge, equipped with a microwave, mini fridge and other cooking equipment. 

The dorm community also has a new, spacious dorm parent office now. It is now to the right of the main staircase, and contains the dorm mailboxes. It includes a lounge area within the office for dormers to watch TV together and an internal, separate office for dorm parent meetings. 

Matina Hawkins, an Annie Wright dorm parent, hopes that the dormers treat the new space like a living room. “A big part of what we want as dorm parents is for students to feel that they have a space to hang out and to be a community together,” she said. 

The dorm parents have also enlisted the prefects with more responsibility this year. This includes organizing a Prefect Lounge cleanup schedule and checking in with different students in their dorm group every week. Hawkins commented that the dorm parents want to see a student led dorm in the future and that the prefects are encouraged to spearhead more initiatives within the dorms. “We would love to get to a point where the dorm parents are kind of the support to the student leaders,” she said. 

This year, there will be no dorm group dinner (dinners that students were required to sit with their dorm groups). Instead, the number of dorm group activities will increase and prefects will check in with their dorm group members throughout the year. 

Going into the new year, Hawkins expressed her hope for the students to take ownership of the dormitories. “I would love to see kids really feeling like this is their space and their home,” she said.