Texas Christian University and the Housing and Residence Life Office is a featured program.
Providing a “residential experience” for TCU students involves many units on campus, but our role is vital to make it all happen. The department of Housing & Residence Life sets the tone for the communities in our residence halls, and the impact is felt across campus. Our motto, A caring community nurturing respectful relationships, reflects our approach to the residential experience, and this attitude is replicated by many other departments across campus. We believe relationships are central to creating a positive residential environment and campus community.
Know, Connect, Empower: More than a Programming Model
To facilitate these relationships, Housing & Residence Life has adopted the Knowing, Connecting, Empowering model. Our staff is expected to know each resident, connect residents to campus resources, and empower residents to achieve success. More than a traditional programming model, KCE is part of a larger campus initiative called Community Renewal that promotes a campus community where people know and care about one another. A campus-based version of Community Renewal International’s holistic model for creating safe, caring, and socially sustainable communities, Community Renewal at TCU is a unique pilot project that intends to foster an ethos of care and communal responsibility on campus. The Community Renewal initiative encourages members of the TCU community to take responsibility for thinking and acting in ways that promote the well-being of those around them and the community as a whole. The initiative centers on the principle that communities thrive when positive, committed attention is given to human relationships.
Within Housing & Residence Life, strong emphasis is placed on all interpersonal relationships, beginning with the relationships students have with their roommates and neighbors. As these relationships begin to develop, and throughout their time in the residence halls, students become exposed to the five outcomes of the KCE model:
1) Students will have an understanding what it means to be a TCU Horned Frog
2) Students will connect to their residence hall and TCU community through relationships.
3) Students will develop personal and healthy behaviors and lifestyles.
4) Students will find meaningful involvement through programs, organizations, groups, on and off campus.
5) Students will know campus resources to achieve academic and professional success to their standards.
What is unique about the KCE model is that it does not impose strict programming requirements upon our resident assistants. This freedom and flexibility allows our staff to cater to the specific needs of each residential community. The results are tight-knit communities in each of our halls, where students grow and develop as members of a community and society. They learn responsibility, they learn to solve problems, and they learn to be leaders. By building relationships, we foster student learning, and pave the way for them to become the doers, dreamers, and trailblazers of tomorrow.
Submitted by Evan Saperstein, Hall Director and Andrew Nash, Hall Director, Texas Christian University