“A dorm is traditionally just a bed and a room and that’s it, but a residential college is a home,” said Peter Hausladen, residence director of Lee Clark Residential College.
Residential colleges create a place for students to get involved, Hausladen said.
Whether it be educational or fun, programs give students a chance to get involved, gain leadership experience and make friends with fellow residents.
For example, many students are involved in Residential College Council (RCC), which consists of an executive board, floor representatives, an athletic director, residential advisers, a Webmaster, a photographer and other offices.
The students in these positions help decide the programming and activities at their residential college.
“For programs, there is an RA side and an RCC side. RA programs act as community builders. The RCC programming is for the entire building and it’s more educational,” Hausladen said.
All of the residential colleges hold activities such as Super Bowl parties and ice cream socials as well as educational activities.
Sometimes Murray State faculty are invited to give lectures at the colleges about things like alcohol awareness before Spring Break. Other programs allow students to participate in hands on activities through classes like “Camping and Canoeing.”
For example, Martin Battle, associate professor of English, is from England. He visited Clark and talked about the stereotypes of England.
Other programs include “Freaky Tiki,” which is similar to a luau where students can participate in karaoke, eat barbecue and limbo all night long.
For the “Fruit Frenzy” program at Clark, students set up bowling pins at the end of the hallway and bowled with fruit.
The residential colleges also give students the opportunity to enroll in classes that teach life skills. The goal of programs and classes are to improve the lives of students and to create an educational and safe environment for them to live and learn in.
Whether through intramurals or service work, students oftentimes wear T-shirts with their residential college’s crest in support of their residential college community.
Philanthropy is also encouraged at the residential colleges. Most colleges host events in order to raise money for their philanthropy.
For example, Franklin Residential College hosts a date auction to benefit Relay for Life. It also works closely with West Kentucky Mentoring, Inc.
“We’re really close with Western Kentucky Mentoring. We always end up taking their kids to football games or basketball games and spend a day with them,” said Aaron Like, residence director of Franklin.
Story by Madison Wepfer, Staff writer