All About Cavanaugh

Author: Lisa von Werder

Cavanaugh Exterior

Cavanaugh Hall is one of the best-located residence halls on campus. At the south end of North Quad, it’s right next to LaFortune Student Center and Washington Hall, a diagonal across the quad from North Dining Hall, and in view of the beautiful Dome. 

The 84-year-old dorm is currently celebrating its 25th year of being a women’s hall, proudly housing over 200 women in seven sections and overflowing with spirit. Year after year, the Cavanaugh Chaos show up early to home game weekend pep rallies, decked in purple and green, and occupy the front lines to cheer, cheer for ole Notre Dame.

Cavanaugh's spirit doesn’t end at the yard lines. It hosts a variety of events throughout the year to raise money for St. Margaret’s House, the signature charity. Some of the most well-known events are "Cav Cornhole" and newly, "Colors of Chaos". In addition, every December there is the Classic Christmas Pageant, put on by Cav girls and performed for local children. This takes place in our Holy Spirit Chapel, which hosts mass three times a week, in addition to a Spanish mass every Sunday morning. (I live right above the chapel, so I get to hear the music every time!)

I had no idea how lucky I was when I was randomly placed in Cavanaugh as a First-Year. The community is so caring and supportive, which shines through our rector, Jo Cecilio. Though it’s only her second year here, she is our rock. She hosts her weekly Cup of Jo every Wednesday morning in her apartment, providing us coffee, bagels, and community, as we share how our week has been and discuss everything from courses to Broadway musicals. She also regularly keeps in contact with our off-campus seniors and coordinates meet-ups with them and the on-campus seniors.

And, of course, my hall mates are a wonderful crew. I still consider Cristina, who is my first-year roommate (we were in a quad, but slept in the same side room) as one of my best friends, even though this is our third year living in separate singles. 

Although my dorm friend group has shifted year to year, they’ve always provided me with a support network and a group to eat meals or see movies with. They truly make Cavanaugh a home for me, and I wouldn’t have it any other way—even if the elevator is a little rickety and there’s no air conditioning. I think us Cav girls keep it cool enough as it is!