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Living and Learning Communities

This year, residence life and housing will be offering five living and learning communities (LLC) that we invite first-year students to consider in their housing preference. The living and learning communities provide an opportunity for first-year students with similar interests to live together while being strengthened and led as a community with the support of faculty, staff, and student leaders.

In all of these communities, students will engage with a wide variety of campus community members and form lasting relationships with one another. The minimum commitment for participants will be a regularly scheduled 2 hour bi-weekly meeting for the first semester. While residents in the community will live together for the full academic year, the bulk of the facilitated programming will take place in the first semester, creating conditions for autonomy and self-regulated programming in the second semester. Participants in the living and learning communities will receive CEL-1 hours for their participation.

How to Apply

Incoming students will be invited to indicate their interest in any of the living and learning communities on the housing preference form, which will be available on The Hub in June. The form asks students to indicate which, if any, communities to which they would like to apply. Once students have submitted their forms, a pop-up will appear on their new student forms page directing them to the application forms for the communities they've chosen. Applications will also be accessible through this page in June. All applications are due on July 1, 2014, and students will receive a confirmation of our receipt of their form after this date. Questions about the communities or application process can be directed to LLC@hampshire.edu.

Program Descriptions

The Social Justice Living and Learning Community (LLC) is designed for first-year students to engage critically in discourse about a wide array of social justice issues. This community, which will be located in Dakin House, is one in which approximately 12 students will be given the opportunity to live with one another while learning about social justice foundations, privilege and oppression, being an ally, praxis, race, class, gender, sexual orientation, ability, and other identities. Staff, faculty, and student leaders will lead bi-weekly discussions and workshops that invite students in the LLC to examine the implications of social justice while bonding and building friendships. Students will also have ample opportunity to participate in other social justice-related initiatives and will make valuable connections with campus leaders with specialization in the field. The majority of programming will take place during the fall semester, leaving students autonomous (with continued support) in the spring. The LLC will include a study and conversation space accessible only to students who live in the community. The Dakin House director will oversee the community and hold open office hours for any residents with questions or concerns. Students can expect to gain from this experience meaningful relationships with one another, lasting connections with staff and faculty, access to greater campus resources, a sense of pride in their community, and a foundation for leadership in the arenas of social justice activism and education.

The Wellness Living and Learning Community (LLC) is designed for first-year students to develop a holistic lifestyle that balances physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. This community, which will be located in Merrill House, is one in which approximately 12 students will be given the opportunity to live with one another while learning about nutrition, meditation, mental health and stress reduction, addiction, sexuality, time management, positive relationships, and other wellness topics. Staff, faculty, and student leaders will lead bi-weekly discussions and workshops that invite students in the LLC to examine self and community care while bonding and building friendships. Students will also have ample opportunity to participate in other wellness-related initiatives and will make valuable connections with campus leaders with specialization in the field. The majority of programming will take place during the fall semester, leaving students autonomous (with continued support) in the spring. The LLC will include a study and conversation space accessible only to students who live in the community. The Merrill House director will oversee the community and hold open office hours for any residents with questions or concerns. Students can expect to gain from this experience meaningful relationships with one another, lasting connections with staff and faculty, access to greater campus resources, a sense of pride in their community, and a foundation for leadership in the arenas of wellness and community health. This community will be substance-free.

The Community Engagement for Social Change Living and Learning Community (LLC) is co-sponsored by Community Partnerships for Social Change (CPSC). This LLC will provide the opportunity to live among students who are passionate about putting social justice into action. It is a space to exchange ideas, collaborate, reflect, and learn together. Through an interactive program of workshops, field trips, dialogues, and local activism, students will develop skills and critical knowledge to become active and effective agents of change during their time at Hampshire and beyond. We will examine issues that arise in campus-community partnerships and how to best navigate these issues when working in communities that are not our own. Through workshops led by staff, faculty, students, and community leaders, CPSC aims to place the work in a larger context and provide tools for putting social justice into action. Most of these workshops will take place in the fall. Example sessions include: privilege/power and anti-oppression awareness, self care, organizing techniques, communication and facilitation skills, art for social change, mutual responsibility, and reciprocity. This community will be located in Merrill House.

The Body, Brain, and Culture Living and Learning Community (LLC) is co-sponsored by the Program for Culture, Brain, and Development. This LLC will provide a group of 12 first year students with the opportunity to live among peers who are passionate about exploring the relationships among the body, brain, and culture. This community will promote a social environment for students to exchange ideas, spark discussion, share perspectives, reflect, and learn together. Through an interactive program of bi-weekly workshops, field trips, and hands-on activities, students will explore the biological, neural/psychological, and cultural factors that influence who we are and what we do. In the fall, bi-weekly activities and workshops will be organized and programed by CBD faculty, staff, and students. In the spring, with the help of CBD, LLC students will be responsible for directing portions of the programing. Examples of possible workshop topics include: farm to table eating: nutritional needs, food systems, and society; neuroscience and society: untangling the relationship between neuroscience and media culture; exploring movement and the body/mind/brain connection; stress across cultures; and representations of the human body across cultures and time. Students engaged in this LLC can expect to gain meaningful relationships, lasting connections with faculty and staff, access to greater campus resources, tools for facilitating conversations and dialogue, and a foundation for campus leadership. This community will be located in Dakin House.

The Environmental Justice and Sustainability Living and Learning Community (LLC) is co-sponsored by the dean of students office and office of the President. The LLC will introduce participating students to the healthy food systems, campus operations, creative curricula, and innovations in campus life that comprise the foundation of the Sustainable Hampshire initiative. Residents of the LLC will be introduced to Div II and Div III peers, faculty and staff, and local community partners connected to this work and to other environmental justice and sustainability efforts in the Pioneer Valley. In the fall, regular programming for the LLC will be scheduled with residents and will also be offered regularly on Saturday mornings. This community will be located in Merrill House.

 
 

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