They Didn't Ask Me (dr_phil_physics) wrote,
They Didn't Ask Me

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My Home Is Gone!

Somehow I managed to live in the same dorm for four years at Northwestern. This wasn't easy, given that one had to survive a housing lottery. And being the social animal I've always been -- I wanted a single room and wanted nothing to do with sharing a room with a roommate. (grin) So I managed to get into Foster House, 2253 Sheridan Road, my freshman year. Room 108, right in the SW corner, with windows on two sides and across the hall from Room 101, Tim the RHC/RA, Resident Adviser for Foster House and Resident Hall Coordinator for Small Houses North. Alas, I lost the lottery the first year, and Gary Murakami, who had the ha-ha room on the first floor, was able to move into the much more spacious Room 108. Eventually, I got off the waiting list and got Room 308, which because of the first floor lounge, was NOT two floors above 108, but in the NW corner of the dorm, at the end of the hall. Next to me was the fire escape, whose landing was shared with CCS next door. If you went up the fire escape, there was a sort of patio up there, built onto the arched bridge between Foster and CCS.

I survived the lottery two more times and stayed in Room 308.

Way back on 26 August 2011 we drove around the campus and released a monarch butterfly in front of Foster House (DW). Who knew this would be the last year of Foster House? Oh, the building is still there, but it has been absorbed into CCS -- the College of Cultural and Community Studies -- the first Residential College at NU, established in 1971 -- five years before I started college.
In summer 2012, CCS underwent major renovations. Foster House, which was an all-male dorm since its construction, was combined with CCS through the addition of a central bridge and staircase and consolidation of mechanical rooms and facilities. Because of the university’s decision to relocated three fraternities into what was once university housing, GREEN house was moved into the new combined 2303 Sheridan. CCS members live in the second and third floors of the combined building, and GREEN house members live on the third, fourth, and fifth floors.
I found all this out because Book 2 of my YA trilogy takes place partly at Northwestern as the princesses go to college in America. And I've been using a lot of resources to track the changes from those idyllic years in the dorm, 1976-80, and the years working at NU and living in Wilmette 1980-84.

So there I was tonight, checking out the fraternities in the north quads, because there's been some movement. 2251 Sheridan used to be Kappa Sigma -- now it's ZBT -- for example. But when I hovered over the interactive NU campus map at my old home, it just said College of Cultural and Community Studies.

Say it ain't so? I mean, the "Foster Home for Single Men Who Couldn't Get Dates" was an institution since 1903. And who could forget the confusion between Foster House north of Tech and Foster-Walker Complex several blocks south, which was a giant coed dorm of single rooms literally furnished by Playskool? The kids these days call Foster-Walker "Plex" now. Who knew?

Actually, CCS was squeezed between Foster and Goodrich -- they really needed room and by conquering Foster House, they share their enlarged territory with GREEN House, which itself was displace by moving frats around. Goodrich looks like it's Pi Kappa Alpha now.

So it's more of a surprise than anything. I'm not going to stop giving to NU because they took away my dorm. (absurd-grin) Hell, Allison hasn't been an all-women's dorm in years, for example. Back in the 70s it was called the Virgin Vault. College students are such asses. The last all-women's dorm is Hobart House -- and THEY call it affectionately Ho House. No, really, it's on their web page. And it, too, is a residential college.

And what's this air conditioning business I keep seeing in campus housing? I bet they changed the sidewalks along Sheridan Road so you don't walk uphill both ways any more. (cranky-old-grin)

Meanwhile, I shall shed a tear for Foster House, which is no longer just Foster House.


Dr. Phil
Posted on Dreamwidth
Crossposted on LiveJournal
Tags: northwestern

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