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New Resident Life Policies Encourage Community Growth

Residents who live on campus at MBU are noticing rule changes throughout the Reslife community that encourage more social interaction in safe and controlled settings.

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Photo by Josh DuBoise

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New policies instituted by leadership of Resident Life beginning in the 2016-17 school year create alternative ways residents can develop community.

These policies include a new open hall policy and a House Cup, which is a competition divided between residence halls to see who gains the most points for their hall.

The initiatives change the way residents can interact through all of Spartan Village.

In the past only residents in Pillsbury Huff and North Hall were allowed to go into the rooms of the opposite sex.

The change now allows every room in Resident Life, including Spartan Village Row and South, to be visited 6-10 p.m. daily after checking in with the resident assistant on duty.

In addition to open hall, residents now have a chance at any time to have community in six different 24-hour lobbies.

“The open hall community is something that students requested on student satisfaction surveys to have more opportunities to have visitors in their rooms and so we are trying to accommodate that by having open hall and 24-hour lobbies,” said Taira Schertz, director of Resident Life.

Locations of the lobbies included the main lobbies of North and Pillsbury Huff Hall, Spartan Village Row 503 lobby, Spartan Village South 301 and 401 main lobbies and the Spartan Village Apartment lobby in 201.

The lobbies require that a resident from their coinciding building be present when any guests are over and only if those guests are invited by that resident.

The goal of 24-hour lobbies and open halls is to create more community on campus.

“Gives the students the opportunities for late night study groups, or movie nights, or just be able to interact more on campus and gives them opportunities to hang out,” said Schertz.

Not only do the directors think this would be beneficial, but so do resident assistants.

“New open hall will be great, it gives people more time to hang out and get to know each other, meet more people,” said Abby Scanio, a second-year resident assistant in Spartan Village studying communications.

Another addition to the ResLife community is the House Cup, a way residents can compete with other halls.

The House Cup divides into four communities, which include Pillsbury Huff Hall, North Hall, Spartan Village Row and Spartan Village South and Apartments.

Victoria Underwood, resident director of Spartan Village South and Apartments, helped organize the idea and vision of the House Cup.

“To engage students to participate more in the activities that MBU hosts, but specifically, in the ResLife activities,” said Underwood.

The concept of the House Cup revolves around a point system.

“Any resident life event, and TNL (Thursday Night Live), and if they go to the fitness center six times in a month, they get 25 points for that,”  said Underwood.

Each event a resident attends gets points for their hall, and the winning hall will receive a prize at the end of the year.

Underwood with the help of Tim Jackson, application developer at MBU, created a way to scan student IDs to show attendance so each hall can get the proper amount of points.

“We scan their student IDs and then it goes into a document, and I forward that document to Tim Jackson who runs a report telling me which building each student lives in,” said Underwood. “Then through Excel I’m able to break those up and count the people and put it in a score sheet.”

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Josh DuBoise

Josh DuBoise

Josh DuBoise is a staff journalist for MBU Timeline. DuBoise is a junior seeking a major in worship arts technology with a minor in broadcast media. Originally a Memphis native, DuBoise enjoys exploring St. Louis by finding local coffee shops, parks and restaurants to appreciate. DuBoise is active on campus by working as a resident assistant in Spartan Village and an audio technician for the MBU Ministry Teams.

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