By Charles Innes ’22 and Johnny Russell ’22
On August 24th, when students returned to Woodberry’s campus, they were greeted by the expansive renovations to Walker. During all of the previous year, scaffolding had surrounded the building, and the construction had continued through the summer, even preventing some students who returned early from living in their new rooms because they had not been finished. However, once the areas had finally been completed, the boys of campus realized it was worth the wait. Many have seen the new modern look of the switchboard the A-dorm offices, but not everyone has gotten a look at the rest of the buildings’ changes.
Not only are Walker Dorms B and C air conditioned, but the rooms are actually modeled similarly to the senior dorm Hanes. Most rooms on the dorm provide lofted beds so students can maximize their space by arranging their desks and other belongings underneath their beds. While all the rooms are nice, the triples on Walker are the by far the biggest on campus, boasting high ceilings and almost double the space of a normal two-person room. Another profound change for 4th formers living on Walker is the new air conditioning. There are thermostats in each room which allow the students to control the temperature of their rooms, which is a big upgrade from freshman year, where New Boys still dwell, relying on box fans and fair weather to keep themselves cool.
The Walker Commons Room itself is a room like Woodberry’s never seen before. Equipped with a ping pong table, pool table, shuffleboard, and a full kitchen (with stoves!), you’d think that it would be a bit cramped. But couches, plush chairs, and large dinner tables are scattered around the room, comfortably allowing a multitude of people to relax and more importantly, encouraging more students to gather around together to watch television or play games, while also munching on some Fir Tree.
Old Boy sophomore Winslow Newton is one of the sophomores lucky enough to live in Walker. “I love how the new space brings the whole class together, whereas in the other common rooms the space was too crowded for more than ten people.” He also mentioned how the newly painted walls changed the atmosphere of the dorm. “In the old space, the dorm felt a little condensed, or crowded. But the new walls and hallways provide a cleaner and more spacious feel to the environment.”
As time progresses, Woodberry’s appearance has adapted and changed, and this face-lift to Walker perfectly represents this change. While Woodberry is a school that is rooted in tradition, some things will inevitably adjust as the modern world advances. This year, sophomores will no longer have to live in the oven that was old Walker. Next year, who knows what will be modified? Despite these developments, tradition is still alive and well at Woodberry, and will undoubtedly continue in the years to come.