Merriam Hall is the environmentally conscious theme-based living-learning community focused on sustainable living, environmental activism, and outdoor programming. Because of its unique theme and popularity, returning students must apply to live in the building in the spring semester and first-year students are placed there with other students based on their First Year Seminar courses.
Merriam Hall houses a community of 100 students in air-conditioned, double with a few triple-occupancy rooms with hallway bathrooms. The average room size in Merriam is 12' by 17'. The hall features sustainable appliances, low-flow showerheads, highly efficient light bulbs, furniture made from eco-friendly or recycled material, and motion sensor light switches. The walls are covered with low-toxic paint and most of the carpet has a high level of recycled content.
With the involvement of community members and the Residence Life hall staff, Merriam is a campus resource for students interested in planning their own outdoor experiences and engaging in dialogue based on environmental topics. Many of the students who live in Merriam are environmental studies majors who take an active leadership role in the community through participating on committees such as the Merriam Makes Meals, Merriam Pride, and Green Committees. Merriam is home to a number of environmentally-themed First Year Seminars that assist in the development of outdoors-minded and environmentally-conscious first-year students. With its innovative and creative programming and theme-oriented activities, Merriam Hall is a catalyst on campus to promote sustainable living, modeling such practices as energy conservation and student-designed environmental initiatives.