After much speculation, Drummond Hall will close after 52 years of service.
Oklahoma State University’s Housing and Residential Life sent residents an email announcing the future closure Friday.
Leon McClinton, director of Housing and Residential Life, said the decision was made after the office conferred with key stakeholders and members of the leadership team.
“Due to the age of Drummond Hall and some of the facility-related issues we are having, we determined it is too costly to address those issues,” McClinton said. “We felt like as we continued to put money into it, it wasn’t the best use of our funds long-term.”
Drummond was poised to host more than 500 residents next fall after Residential Life announced the closing of Wentz for the 2018-19 academic calendar year for renovation in February. Now that Drummond’s fate is sealed, Wentz must remain open.
“We will renovate Wentz Hall over three summers when the students are not living in the hall,” McClinton said. “The renovation plan to Wentz Hall will be to upgrade the residential rooms. We will have new flooring, new paints, new carpeting, new lighting in the hallway, as well as new bathroom fixtures and appliances. We will also expand the laundry room and the basement.”
Residents who lost their reservation can sign up to live in Wentz or other living options on campus where space is available.
McClinton said the university will tear down Drummond and its neighbor, Kerr, which closed in 2015.
“We don’t know the timing of it,” McClinton said. “The university will eventually take those two buildings out.”
Students have reported lack of front desk reception, power outages, bathroom odors, water leaks, broken washing machines and faulty elevators while living in Drummond.
Eddy Vergara, a civil engineering sophomore, said he agrees with the decision to close the building.
“I think they’ve handled it kind of efficiently,” Vergara said. “They sent an email saying that it was a response to listening to people who stay in the building and pay rent every semester. It is a good idea to reopen Wentz for anyone who can’t afford a different room-and-board option.”
Carson Jensen, an animal science and business sophomore, said though he doesn’t encounter many problems while living in Drummond, he supports the closing as long as there is a proper plan to use the space where the closed halls are.
“I have seen a lot of dorms that are a lot worse than Drummond,” Jensen said. “I won’t be sad if they close it down. If there is funding for a new dorm or something, then go ahead and build a new one."
The closing of Drummond means Wentz, Parker, Stout and Iba are the remaining traditional halls. McClinton said closing Drummond is the right call, but people will greatly miss the building.
“I think it is a very smart business decision, but Kerr and Drummond have been parts of the campus for a very long time,” McClinton said. “I think there is a bit of sadness that eventually those buildings will no longer be present on our campus.”