It doesn’t take much to make a freshman giggle. The simple mention of sex and Thurston in the same sentence seems to do the trick.
Once rumored to be the second most sexually active dorm in the country, Thurston’s notoriety as a sex colony is hard to shake, despite the falsity of the urban legend.
Freshman Ben Linden said that he had heard about Thurston’s reputation before move-in day and it made him nervous. The fact that he was living on the ninth floor only heightened his fears, the freshman said.
On his housing application Linden said that he chose to live on a lower level of Thurston because he had heard that the higher the floor, the more wild the freshmen.
Seth Weinshel, the assignment director for GW housing, said that students are given the option to choose between upper and lower Thurston because of the different housing themes each floor offers.
Nearing the end of the school year, Linden said that the dorm’s reputation was over-hyped. He said that he no longer considers the ninth floor to be the most promiscuous.
“I think it changes every year,” he said, adding that he now considers some of the lower floors to be the destination point for freshmen on the prowl.
Freshman Tyler Fishbone also said that he thought he had a good grasp on what the dorm would be like, even before he stepped foot in his ninth-floor room.
To prove his point, Fishbone recalled the time that he found something stuck to the bottom of his shoe – a condom he later learned was filled with sperm from his friend’s most recent sex partner.
Once whispered to have a high ranking of sexually active students, according to a study conducted by Cornell University, or possibly a list compiled by Playboy, The Hatchet reported in the 2006 sex issue that neither distinction exists.
Still, Thurston residents and freshmen alike were quick to categorize the building as a place to go for sex. Many like Fishbone said that it might just be the quantity of students who live there and not because of the building’s legendary status.
“It’s just (about the) sheer amount of people,” he said.
Thurston is the largest first-year dorm on campus and can hold a maximum of 1,116 students. Compared to another freshman dorm like Madison, which can house 222, or Lafayette, which can only hold 162, Thurston leads the pack in density of freshmen.
Vera Shekhets, a freshman that lives on the fifth floor, said because so many people are always walking in and out of the building, it takes the pressure off of any judgment that might be associated with the “walk of shame.”
Lafayette resident Jason Cherchia said if he had the option of bringing a girl to his room or going to her dorm in Thurston, he’d choose the latter.
“I don’t know. I feel like there would be less judgment (in Thurston).”
Though dorm life in general can provide for uncomfortable roommate agreements when it comes to sex and privacy, Thurston’s reputation and crowdedness has led some residents to dismiss any expectation for intimacy.
Bryce Holman lives in a triple in Thurston, but because he has the back alcove all to himself, he said he doesn’t ask his roommates to leave if he brings a girl home.
“I don’t feel the need,” Holman said.
Freshman John Assini said that there are only five boys living in his six-person suite in Thurston. The fifth-floor resident said that he and his roommates have agreed to keep the extra bed in the back for late night visitors.
“As far as I know the sheets have been changed by other people,” Assini said.
Though Assini and his roommates have some more space than they should, he said that sharing a room with four others can make a private moment hard to come by.
He said, “The more roommates you have, the more people you have to kick out.”