Students bid farewell to Finney as Voorhees reopens

As construction crews put the finishing touches on the $4 million renovation of Voorhees Hall, students in Finney Hall packed up their rooms to prepare for the move—but not before giving The College of Idaho’s oldest dormitory a proper sendoff.

With hands raised high and holding plastic champagne glasses filled with sparkling apple cider, students celebrated the Finney Farewell with a toast.

“Let’s raise our glasses to the Finney Hall of the last century and the Finney Hall of the next century,” said Jen Nelson, director of residence life.

Over those 100-plus years, Finney has housed thousands of Yotes within its walls, including sophomores Melissa O’Berto and Kaitlin Heller. The duo moved into Finney Hall this fall and have cherished the opportunity to experience Finney and its quirks before the renovation.

“So many people have lived in the same room as us and shared laughs and long nights,” O’Berto said. “It’s cool to think of all the people that have been affected by Finney through history.”

O’Berto and Heller’s favorite memories include everyone huddling together for warmth and hot chocolate in the lobby after the Finney Fun Run, and experiencing the Finney balcony—though their daydream of tanning on the balcony lasted about five seconds before their residence assistant told them to get back inside.

Living on the third floor, the students enjoy an unrivaled view of the sun rising over campus and Caldwell. But being that high up, they’re looking forward to the more modern amenities Voorhees Hall will offer, including an elevator.

“It’s going to be a new experience, but I’m definitely thankful that we got to live in Finney before it was remodeled,” Heller said.

Senior Blake Franklin has lived in Finney for three years, being an RA before becoming student hall director. Although Finney wasn’t his first choice to live in, Franklin has come to love the dorm built in 1910.

“Finney definitely has a different element, being an upperclassmen dorm and being a little bit older,” Franklin said. “It has a lot of character and I think it creates a very dynamic community every year.”

With the unique architecture, good-sized rooms and close community of friends, Finney has a “homey feel,” Franklin said. Though he’s excited to move into Voorhees for his final semester, Finney will always have a special place in his heart, full of good memories.

The College of Idaho has a 125-year-old legacy of excellence. The C of I is known for its outstanding academic programs, winning athletics tradition and history of producing successful graduates, including seven Rhodes Scholars, three governors, four NFL players and countless business leaders and innovators. Its distinctive PEAK Curriculum challenges students to attain competency in the four knowledge peaks of humanities, natural sciences, social sciences and a professional field—empowering them to earn a major and three minors in four years. The College’s close-knit, residential campus is located in Caldwell, where its proximity both to Boise and to the world-class outdoor activities of southwest Idaho’s mountains and rivers offers unique opportunities for learning beyond the classroom.  For more information, visit