Lots of Dunster House Lovin’!

Over the past couple of weeks, there’s been a lot of Dunster-related activity in my life: between Housing Day, room selection, and faculty dinner this past week, it’s been great to have excuses to get involved with the House.

First up: Housing Day. As many of my fellow bloggers reported, Housing Day is truly one of the most exciting (if not THE most exciting) day on campus, and I’ve found that the tradition has only gotten more fun as an upperclassman. Dunster, like every other house, starts the day early with breakfast in the dining hall – we all get decked out in new Dunster “swag” (this year we got tanks and sunglasses) and start getting ourselves psyched up for the critically important task of welcoming new freshmen into the House. This year, I had the important responsibility of sporting one of the moose costumes – mine was an inflatable moose head, which looked TOTALLY ridiculous on me but was a complete blast to wear.

Me (the moose!) with the Pforzheimer House polar bear

While Housing Day was a blast, I was also super excited to undertake the process of finding a room for senior year. Admittedly, I was a bit freaked out that I was looking for my senior suite, because it’s just further evidence that I’m starting to get old, but it was nonetheless fun to spend time with my blockmates finding the perfect room. While freshman blocking groups get randomly assigned to a house and then placed in a suite over the summer, upperclassmen are given the opportunity to hand pick their specific room. It is, of course, a privilege to have some say in what room you end up living in, but it also ends up feeling like an enormous responsibility – I’m in charge of my own fate! This year, as seniors, we weren’t going to take any chances and the process was undertaken with extreme precision and care.

The first decision we made was to join up with other girls from our blocking group, such that we’re living in a “quint” as a group of five (rather than in a triple, like this year). We then spent HOURS poring over the floor plans for the house, comparing common room size, bedroom layout, window views… We were so indecisive that the night before the lottery happened, we went and visited our top four picks, sinking so low as to knock on the doors of current seniors’ rooms at 11 pm the night before the lottery to settle any debate about which room was our first choice. We even hunted down the four groups who got to pick their rooms in front of us, to figure out which suites they were going for – this kind of information is important! Ultimately, all of the preparation made for a smooth lottery overall, and we got our first choice room – it has a SWEET view of the river!

Fourth Floor Plan

This week was also Dunster’s Faculty Dinner, and I invited Dr. Andrew Berry, a professor in the Organismic and Evolutionary Biology department, along with two other undergrads from the House. It’s always such a great opportunity to have dinner with your professors – being able to interact casually with them makes for a really interesting interaction. One of my favorite traditions at Harvard!

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