Vice President for Campus Services and Chief Planning Officer Robin Morey revealed at last week’s University Senate meeting that Emory University is planning to build a new residence hall at Oxford College that will be open to students by summer 2026. This came after he remarked that Oxford needs to replace the Jolley Residential Center (JRC), which was constructed in the 1950s.

Morey said the new residence hall will house more than 300 students and is expected to go into design this spring. In collaboration with Oxford’s administration, Morey and Associate Vice President for Planning and Engagement David Payne have identified a “storage house” where some campus service administration work as the location for the new residence hall, according to Morey.

Amina Malone (25Ox) lives on the bottom floor of JRC’s Dickey Hall, which is one of four halls that make up the residential center. She described living in JRC as a “rollercoaster.”

“Sometimes it’s fine,” Malone said. “It almost feels like there’s at least one thing wrong every time I go to use the washing machine or go to the bathrooms. It just always feels like there’s something that’s broken, so it’s frustrating.”

Vice President for Campus Services and Chief Planning Officer Robin Morey said Oxford needs to replace the Jolley Residential Center (JRC). Courtesy of Emory University

In January, JRC residents opted to relocate to other housing on the Oxford campus after finding mold in their dorm rooms. Following such reports, staff members from Emory’s Environmental Health and Safety Office (EHSO) inspected three rooms in Dickey Hall and discovered that a leak in a water line was creating the mold. The University hired professionals to repair the leak and remove the mold.

The inspections continued into spring break and included an assessment of conditions such as humidity, temperature and the possible presence of mold, dust or debris, according to an email EHSO, Facilities Management and Residential Education and Services sent to JRC residents on March 22. The email notified the students that the residence hall was safe and stated plans to install portable dehumidifiers where necessary. It also mentioned the college’s plan to upgrade JRC’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems over the summer.

Dickey Hall resident Anli Hernandez (25Ox) reported ongoing climate problems in JRC and the bathroom facilities.

“Lately there’s been a problem with humidity in the restrooms, so we had to keep the door open when somebody’s showering,” Hernandez said. “The toilets sometimes don’t work very well. In my room, the AC is a problem. They have tried to fix it before but I don’t think there’s been any changes.”

With no formal statement to all Oxford students, rumors about different renovation plans have spread around campus. Malone said that despite the emails she has received regarding JRC, she is unsure of what changes will happen to the residence hall.

According to Amelia Briones (25Ox), there has been a lack of transparency from Oxford administration regarding issues within JRC. Additionally, she said that Oxford “always takes a while” to address students’ reports of problems in the dorm.

Malone shared that she is excited to live in another residence hall next year because of the issues she’s had to deal with as a JRC resident.

“I’m definitely looking forward to living somewhere else,” Malone said. “I definitely don’t want to live in JRC again.”

+ posts