Stats: The Centennial I complex, also known as Upper Cents, is comprised of six buildings located directly across from the Rathbone Dining Hall. Congdon, Emery, Leavitt, McConn, Smiley and Thornburg each house 44 students, with 22 students on each floor. The buildings are co-ed, but the floors are single-gender. There is a Gryphon on each floor, and one Head Gryphon for the area who lives in McConn.
In each room, each student is provided with a desk with desktop bookshelf, desk chair, bed, dresser, medicine cabinet with mirror, and a closet. Check out floor plans here!
The sister area of the Centennial I complex is the Centennial II complex, also known as Lower Cents.
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Building Profile: (By Joe Dinardo, Class of 2013)
The general mood of the building is definitely positive. Upper Cents has a very homey feel and I think that people see that when they move in. Since the Upper Cents complex is separated into buildings, each building tends to stick together. My freshman year, Smiley was all male and there was a sense of pride and community that emanated throughout the building. I feel that that feeling is still there today. The best thing to do is to just go up to your hallmates, knock on their doors, and start a conversation.
The lobby and lounge are great areas to meet new people. The lounge has a nice TV, where people can go to hang out. I remember people used to always bring their laptops down there and do homework as other people would watch TV, and everyone could just talk. It is a nice area to get work done as well as interact. I spent many hours in the lobby my freshman year. That is when I honed my ping pong skills, and today, I owe all of my ping pong knowledge to that table in Smiley freshmen year.
When it comes to laundry, my advice is planning. You have to plan out when you will do your laundry because in Smiley, you only have one room to do it in. Aside from that, you have the community laundry room, which all of Upper Cents can use. This room is useful to have because it has plenty of washers and dryers, but it can be a hassle to walk to and from when it rains or snows because you have to go outside to access it.
For the rooms, I would advise to pack light. You will not have a lot of room just to yourself. Also, make sure to bring a power cord. Since there is either going to be one or two outlets, a power cord is crucial to have multiple electrical devices running at the same time. The fact that the floor is carpeted is a very nice touch that I have grown to miss, living in other residence halls. It makes spilling more of an issue, but that is why I feel like people are less inclined to make a mess. Bringing or buying posters from the poster sale that they always have is also nice. I have learned that having your room decorated makes it feel much more comfortable and helps you get acclimated into the new atmosphere that you just entered.
Upper Cents is in a fantastic location. This was something else I did not realize, but have learned to appreciate as I have lived in other building areas. I lived at Rathbone my freshman year. Not only is it convenient that Rathbone is directly in front of Upper Cents, but a lot of people go to Rathbone. It is one of the two main dining halls, and it is open on the weekends. This was something I missed deeply this past year. Another reason that Upper Cents is in such a great location is that it is only a stair walk away from the gym. Also, for the business students out there, it is just a little farther walk past the gym to get into Rauch, the home of our business school. One of the great things about Lehigh is that you are never really more than a 10 minute walk from anywhere else on campus, but if you do need to go somewhere further like the Mountaintop Campus, the Taylor Gym shuttle bus stop is also right in front of the gym.
The desk can be moved around easily, and I found it most useful to put it along the wall, right at the head of my bed. Most people did this, as the rooms in Smiley are longer than they are wide. Also, an extension cord is something that every student should bring. I had to run out and buy one my first day.