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FAQs concerning the renovation of HGS

FAQs concerning the renovation of HGS

On January 15th, 2015, Provost Ben Polak announced exciting plans to build a new graduate and professional student residence hall and to renovate the Hall of Graduate Studies (HGS). As these projects move forward, you may have questions about how these changes will impact our community. We have prepared a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs) to provide some answers. We will update the FAQs periodically as plans for both projects progress. You may direct any additional questions to us by writing to  grad.dean@yale.edu.

What impact will these projects have on graduate and professional students?

The new residential complex will significantly improve the quality of on-campus housing for graduate and professional students. Similarly, the renovation of HGS presents the opportunity to enhance graduate students’ engagement in their academic programs, particularly in the humanities. One ripple effect of the renovation is that we can consider where best to position university facilities for graduate and professional student life in both the short- and long-term.

Why is HGS being renovated?

A comprehensive renovation of HGS is needed to address long deferred maintenance issues, and to make necessary improvements and modernizations to the building.

Will all of HGS close at once or will parts of it be renovated at different times?

The project is still in the planning stages. However, because of the size of the building, it is anticipated that renovations will take place in phases.

When will the renovations be completed?

The renovation is a multi-year project with phases to be completed at different times. A final completion date is yet to be determined.

When will the HGS dorm rooms close?

June 2018, most likely.

When HGS reopens, will the graduate student dormitory and dining hall reopen as well?

As described in the provost’s letter, the renovated spaces will be used for academic purposes rather than as living facilities. The Blue Dog Café will remain in HGS.

Will other university facilities replace the student housing in HGS?

Yes. The University is committed to maintaining the number of beds available for graduate and professional students on campus. As part of this commitment, a new residence hall for graduate and professional students will be built at 272 Elm Street. Based on recommendations developed in partnership with students on the Graduate & Professional Student Advisory Committee on Housing, including representatives from the Graduate Student Assembly and the Graduate and Professional Student Senate, it will have modern suite-style units with kitchens. In addition, the Housing Office will provide expanded support to help members of the Yale community find off-campus housing, including a comprehensive website and a housing fair to be held on February 7

When will the new residence hall open?

The new residence hall will open in the summer 2018.

How large will the new residence hall be?

The new residence hall will have 82 beds. Additional beds will be available in the Swing Space in 2017. The Swing Space will no longer be used by undergraduates, but will instead be transferred to the Law School for use by its students and, as space permits, for non-Law graduate and professional students.

Will students living in the HGS dorm be given priority for university housing elsewhere when HGS closes? 

Yes. HGS residents who wish to remain in dorms on campus will receive priority.

What will the new housing rates be?

Rental rates have not been determined yet, but the University will continue to make affordable rates of on-campus housing a priority.

What is the role of the Graduate & Professional Student Advisory Committee on Housing?

The Graduate & Professional Student Advisory Committee on Housing, which includes representatives of the Graduate Student Assembly and the Graduate and Professional Student Senate, will work with the University to provide feedback throughout the process of building the new dorm. The University will also work directly with the chair of the Graduate Student Assembly and the president of the Graduate and Professional Student Senate.

Will there be parking for graduate students living in the new residence hall?

Current parking practices will remain in place: All graduate students with cars who live in on-campus dormitories will continue to have parking space available in a Yale student parking garage, such as Pierson Sage or Howe Street. We anticipate that most graduate students will continue to rely on the Yale shuttle, biking or walking.

During and after the HGS renovations, where will the Graduate Student Center be located?

The University is committed to providing space for graduate and professional student gatherings and activities. Like all offices in HGS, the graduate student life offices along with graduate student meeting rooms and programming space will move out of the building. The University will work with the Graduate Student Assembly and the Graduate and Professional Student Senate to identify student needs, especially with regard to finding a new space for the graduate student community to use throughout the renovation and after. Because of the “domino effect” of office and department moves likely to take place after the renovation is complete, we do not yet know where all student life facilities will ultimately be located, but we are committed to creating permanent, suitable, space for this purpose.

Will the McDougal Common Room and Blue Dog Café close during the HGS renovation?

Yes, during the phases of renovation all facilities in HGS will be closed or moved. Both the McDougal Common Room and the Blue Dog Café will re-open once the renovation is completed.

When HGS closes for renovations, where will the Graduate School administrative offices and humanities departments be located?  

The Graduate School Academic Deans, the Office for Diversity and Equal Opportunity (ODEO), and the Teaching Fellow Program, Admissions and Financial Aid offices will move to new spaces. HGS humanities departments will be temporarily relocated to swing space on a phased schedule. Specific locations have not yet been determined.

Will the Graduate School administrative offices and humanities departments return to HGS when the building reopens?

Academic departments, but not the Graduate School administrative offices, will return to the building.

Will there be offices and meeting spaces for graduate students in departments in HGS?

Yes, we expect the renovation will provide an opportunity to design space for graduate students, particularly those in the humanities, which will specifically meet their needs as teachers, scholars, and members of the larger intellectual community.