Living in Richards was one of the best things that has happened to me since getting into Lehigh.
Richards is in a relatively central location. It is higher up than the centennials, but lower on the mountain than Dravo. I personally believe that Richards has one of the best locations of dorms on campus. We are one staircase away from the Rathbone dining hall, a two minute walk from Hawks Nest (a popular place to get food and milkshakes late at night) and a five minute walk from our other dining hall, Cort, so food is never far away. Getting to classes is easy as well. You will always have to walk down to class and back up the mountain to get home, but after a few weeks, you get used to the up and down of Lehigh. Me and my friends joked that at school there is really no left or right, but just up and down at Lehigh.
Richards House consists of four floors with A and B sides or wings. Three of the floors are houses boys and one of the floors houses girls. This was definitely something that I had to get used to right after moving in. The benefit of having each floor split into A and B halls is that you have an opportunity to get close with the girls and guys you are living with. Another benefit is that you can also get to know your gryphon better. My hall was around 24 girls and our gryphon did a great job getting to know each of us. She even left us little gift bags for holidays and always made herself available to talk when we had a question or a problem. She became one of my close friends during the year and having her as a friend definitely helped make my first year so much better.
I had the pleasure of living in both a single and a double during my year in Richards. Both the singles and doubles are spacious and offer plenty of room for storing anything from extra plastic drawers to a few sleds for when it snows. Me and my roommate had two sleds in our double and still had room for all the carloads of other things we brought to school.
An organization I got involved with on campus was Residence Hall Council, or RHC. Throughout the year, the RHC met and planned events for the residents. We had great success with all of our events and I would like to believe that they helped bring together our already close knit building. Some examples of events that we have done include Mr. Richards (a “man pageant” in which guys signed up to compete to win the show through a talent portion, Q&A and text to vote rounds), the Richies Award Show (an award show where we gave out superlatives and awards to residents after nominations and votes were cast), Belated Spring Equinox Cactus Decorating Party. When you get to school, I would urge you to get involved with RHC by either running for a position on the board or by attending the weekly meetings.
To close out this blog post, I want to talk pros and cons of living in Richards. I asked some of my friends who I lived with and this is what they had to say:
Chris Watson: Pros- You get a solid ball court and two lounges. Cons- Showers get cold when toilets are flushed and the death stairs
Brandon Fuerst: Pro- One connected community area
Kari Moffat: Pro- The living space was always clean and spacious. The location next to hawks nest was also a huge pro. I felt safe in Richards. The basketball court/parking lot was also a pro. Con- No AC and you can hear everything through the walls.
Carine Leslie: Pro- Because it’s not a huge dorm you really get to know the people you’re living with and become really close with them over the year.
Freddy Coleman: Pros- Small enough to know most residents, has basketball court, grill out front, has two lounges for studying or recreation, Logan hodges is head gryphon next year, bigger rooms than most dorms, not too far from classes, close to hawks nest, the gym isn’t to far. Cons- No air conditioning, Lacey Quinn is not the head gryphon anymore, it’s the second highest freshmen dorm.
Alex Brint: Pro- the way the halls work helps everyone become close. Cons- Can’t think of any
Cassie Gakos: Pro- Big rooms, everyone shared the same two lounges and that was great. (made it easy to meet everyone in the building). Cons- Not too many girls, less socializing than M&M. I don’t have many cons honestly we had like the best dorm ever
Josh Finklestein: Pros: Not too big not too small, facilitates a close and diverse community.
Mike Di Martino: Pros- The lounges provided a great sense of community if you chose to take advantage of them. Con- It’s kinda hike to get there
Lexi Zargar: Pros- Really big rooms and good sized bathrooms, there’s not too many people living there so you get really close to people in your hall and building. Con- The only con I can think of is we don’t have lounges on every floor
Hilbert Chen: Pros- you really get close with your hall. Cons- some people take the term “work hard, play hard” and completely ignore the work hard part
Rachel Keller: Pro- The community type living. I feel like we all grew really close from the set up of the building, and all of the celebrations we had were awesome! Con- Since there was only one study lounge, it could get pretty rowdy at times!
Also here are some links to YouTube videos that you can check out to get more of a feel of Richards is like!
1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3KWPw56SG0 (Video tour of a double)
2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5BlhtQsZ9xM (Video tour of a single)
3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bXU7yrwNQgc (Opening video for RHC’s Mr. Richards)
4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X1mSGVLuY2c (Opening video for RHC’s Richies Awards)
Thanks for reading and can’t way to see you all on campus!