Why Winona State is the best place for MN students to crash


Now this ranking may be causing a bit of bemusement at Winona State University.

The campus placed third in CampusSplash.com’s first Dormy Awards for best residence halls, as covered by USA Today.

It made the top three in the country in three divisions:

  • #3 school for dorms
  • #2 among best dorms in the country (Lucas Hall)
  • #3 party dorm (Lucas Hall)

The rankings were based on student reviews, so they’re not exactly assessments one should take too seriously.

The most surprising choice seems to be Lucas Hall, the section of Prentiss-Lucas Hall that serves freshman women. The place is at least 20 years old, holds two to a room, and from the pictures I’ve seen it’s not exactly The Ritz-Carlton.

Two staffers in Winona State’s housing division said Lucas is popular because it is close to campus and is the only on-campus freshman dorm with a sink.

But #3 party dorm?

Judy Piel, administrative assistant in the university’s housing and residence life department, told me:

“I’m not sure where that one came from. It’s an alcohol-free campus — and also smoke-free.”

The rankings were part of the rollout of DormSplash.com, an affiliated site that rates student dorms.

Most unfortunately, Winona State did not place in the lists of “14 Dorms with the Hottest Residents,” and “14 Schools with the Best RAs.”