Closed for the 2017-2018 school year
Earlier this summer news was released that MacIsaac Hall, one of the oldest and most beloved residences on campus would be closing its doors for the 2017-2018 school year for the first time since its opening in 1967.
Mac Hall has frequently been in the news for the past few years, making it one of the most discussed residences on campus. From the decision to remove second year students; to the issues surrounding BURMAC, the famous house cup; and a controversial and highly discussed article highlighting sexual assault in the residence, MacIsaac Hall has seen more than its fair share of limelight lately.
Controversy aside, MacIsaac Hall has been home to thousands of first and second year students over the years. Shortly after news of the shutdown was sent out to staff and students via email, many heartbroken Mac Dawgs took to social media to share their sadness and reminisce about their good times spent in “The Jungle”.
When speaking with students, many lament that the decision to shut the residence down has “ruined traditions along with impacting the strong alumni community that it has created”. However, some students feel as though it is completely necessary in order to “make STFX safe again”.
News of the closure outlined the decision and attributed it to the alleged 5 per cent decline in frosh attending STFX this fall semester. Because the number of freshmen is not as high as usually anticipated, and with the 2016 reopening of residence Mt. St. Bernard that boasts hundreds of brand new dorms, there is simply not enough students to fill all the residences.
The email that was sent out also highlights that the school believes the closure will be an opportunity to “reimagine” a new student experience for the hall. These decisions are likely linked to the controversies MacIsaac faced in the past years, surrounding their party traditions and history of rowdy behaviour.
Administration also say they plan to reopen the building in the fall of 2018. Although the closure of Mac Hall is sure to bring disappointment to mac alumni and frosh alike, it will allow coordinators and student representatives to work to reinvent the idea of what MacIsaac is, a large family of students living in one of STFX’s most sought after residences, and what it can continue to be into the future: a safe and happy place for all the students who call it home.