The Wabash Community Council (WCC) in partnership with Residence Life and Delta Gamma Pi sorority held an ugly sweater party last Thursday on the floor 14 of the Wabash Building.
Wabash Building floor 27 resident assistant (RA) and adviser to the Wabash Community Council (WCC) Janessa Rivas said the program was meant to lighten the mood before finals week.
The program included decorating cookies, making holiday cards, and indulging in sweets in an effort to help relieve students’ stress before exam week, Rivas said. Programs like this aim to get students to socialize, which creates community and a better academic environment, Rivas explained.
“It’s Thursday night and people are going out. So I’m really happy that people did the arts and crafts which makes you less stressed – it makes you feel like a kid again,” Rivas said.
Social Chair for Delta Gamma Pi Greek sorority, Bailey Swinney, collaborated with Rivas and WCC on the program.
Resident’s attending RA program
Programs such as this lets students know about on campus Greek life, Swinney said. The program got students away from studying which keeps students from overdoing it before finals, including herself, Swinney said.
“I made two Christmas cards for my younger brothers who live far away. I kind of indulged for 20-minutes and then got back to helping everybody else…
“Particularly for this event it was just a social event… come out and talk to some of the different students, the newer students in the Wabash Building. And let them know that were here and to help program any events that we can,” Swinney said.
About 40 to 50 residents and students attended the event. The WCC plans to continue organizing events and hopes to promote change within the community through programs, Rivas said. The WCC plans to invite more residents to voice their opinions next semester, Rivas said.
The Office of Residence Life (ORL) at Roosevelt University coordinates housing students in three residence halls including the Wabash building, Fornelli Hall, and the University Center. Roosevelt’s ORL employs 17 student RA’s at Wabash such as Rivas who organize programs.
“We just kind of come together to discuss anything [affecting the Wabash Building Residence Hall],” Rivas said…
“As far as next semester we’re really looking to change [the community] around and really get more voice and opinions from the residents and try to recruit more people. Just so we can make… a better building for everyone… And this program was definitely a big boost ending off the first semester of Community Council.”
“Study Bucks” give incentive to study in community lounges
The Wabash building has been full of ORL programs that aim to benefit students academically, Rivas said.
“Our RA’s especially through community council… [are] teaming up with one another. Having programs to be able to study and relax… We’re bringing in tutors and just having really academically driven programs here in the last week and a half.”
Along with the ugly sweater party, RA’s have held various resident programs this past week including a pilates workout, jeopardy and pizza, and study sessions, according to Rivas.
“Seeing that people came and smiled and chilled out a little kind of gave me the like… this meant something,” Swinney said.
- Wabash Building graduate hall coordinator Jewell Washington focuses said that ORL programming creates the Wabash Building distinction between a dorm and a residence hall. A dorm is where you sleep and a residence hall is where you live, Washington said.
“The main goal [of programming] would be creating a community of inclusiveness… A place where you’re learning but you’re also living,” Washington said.
The ORL approaches programming in different ways, Washington said. Global programs effect the community as a whole. Passive program are indirect programs such as distributing information. Active programs require residents to be physically present, such as the Yule Ball, a program held last Saturday that invited residents to dance, Washington said.
Programs are designed to create an academic and social balance in the community, Washington said. Currently, a global program offers “study bucks” to students who are seen by RA’s studying in hall lounges during nightly RA rounds. At the end of the semester, the resident with the most “study bucks” will be rewarded with a $100 gift certificate to the book store, Washington said.
“Apart of being a good student who studies is realizing not to get yourself burnt-out and to study in good increments of time,” Washington said.
“A way to help students [from getting burnt out] is… to create programs that are specifically formed so that you can take a break from academics,” Washington said.
Social programs such as the ugly sweater party brings students away from learning and helps to create the balance of living in the community,Washington said.