April 18, 2022

Preview Shanley Hall, a new residence hall being built for sophomores

Providence College broke ground on Wednesday, April 13, 2022, for Shanley Hall, a new residence hall that will carry the name of the college’s 12th president, Rev. Brian J. Shanley, O.P. ’80.

It is the first new residence hall since McCarthy Hall, formerly known as Suites Hall, was constructed in 2004. Like McCarthy Hall, it will consist of suites with double rooms, a shared bath, and a common living area. It will available to sophomores beginning in fall 2023 and will accommodate about 350 students.

At the groundbreaking, Father Shanley, now the president of St. John’s University, said there can be a risk in naming a building after a person who is still alive. But he said the residence hall does not carry only his name, but also that of his late parents, whose lives were influenced by Providence College and who themselves made an impact on the institution.

His father, Joseph V. Shanley ’49, was the son of Irish immigrants who studied at PC after World War II through the GI Bill after encouragement from the Dominican priests at his family parish in Connecticut. Father Shanley’s mother, Elaine McNerny Shanley, was an undergraduate at Albertus Magnus College, founded and staffed by Dominican religious sisters. She was head cataloger in Phillips Memorial Library from 1968-1993 and held the rank of associate professor — and the distinction of being the first woman awarded tenure by the college in 1975.

“Both of them led extraordinary lives, largely due to to Providence College,” Father Shanley said. “I am grateful today that the Shanley name is up there. And what I hope is that Shanley Hall is a place where that story, for more families, gets played out.”

Watch scenes from the groundbreaking ceremony and see renderings of the new residence hall designed by Symmes Maini & McKee Associates:

Renderings of Shanley Hall

more about father shanley

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