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Housing, residence program prepares for fall semester

Aug. 11, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

HUNTINGTON -- Students won't start coming to campus until Aug. 21, but for the Department of Housing and Residence Life these final weeks of summer are a busy time.

"We've done a lot of maintenance over the summer in our Residence Halls to make life more comfortable for our students," LeKesha Glover, associate director of the Department of Housing and Residence Life, said. "We have replaced and updated furniture in the halls to look more inviting. We has also replaced air conditioners, and added a smart classroom to one of the halls, We have hired lot of new staff there are also new faculty staying in the residence halls."

While the department works throughout the summer, planning begins in the spring semester.

"Normally in January we are already talking about what we are doing in the next school year," Glover said." Who we are hiring and what projects we need to do. We also do an annual assessment where we ask students what they would like to see in the halls and we try to produce as much of that as we can in the summer. We have weekly planning meetings to go over what we need to do in all sides of housing from faculties planning to residence life, to the business side, to the actual staff assignments."

Housing and Residence Services has been reaching out to incoming students over the course of the summer and will continue to do so over the week of welcome.

"For orientation we do a student presentation for the residents that will be living in the halls on what they can expect by living in the halls," Glover said. "We explain what to bring, what not to bring and what policies they need to pay attention to. We also cover issues like what to do if they don't get along with their roommate. We also do a session for parents to answer what questions they might have. They always want to know what the dimensions of the rooms are and what they can bring. As for the Week of Welcome (a campus event for incoming freshmen), we assist in planning the activities that occur during it. We are planning an activity called 'Party Hardy' that we are planning in the residence halls where students go through a simulated party. It gives them some education on what its like to operate in a scene like that where alcohol is being served. We have 'beer goggles' which simulate what it's like to be under the influence. We go over the dangers and how to stay safe and be smart while having a good college experience."

Because so many students will be arriving on campus for the first time and a volunteer staff of a "move-in crew" will be on hand to help students and their families move into the residence halls.

"The Move In Crew has really grown over the years to work like clockwork," Glover said. "Students and their parents will arrive, pull in, and unload their items on the sidewalk nearest to their building. Members of the Move In Crew will then help them The students will then go in, fill out their paperwork, receive their keys then come back out and escort their family and the move in crew to the room. This year we have around 200 volunteers on campus as part of the move in crew. It's really nice for the Marshall Community to come together to help the new students."

In the winter months the Department of Housing and Residence Life will offer "bad weather rooms" to students who normally live off campus but might find themselves stranded in winter weather. Also during finals week they offer "red-eye rooms" which will offer students an overnight place to study or work on a term paper.

The Department of Housing and Residence Life is located on Campus at Holderby Hall. For more information visit them online at muwww-new.marshall.edu/housing.