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Programming for First Year Students

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Ashley Elliott

on 13 August 2014

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Transcript of Programming for First Year Students

Programming for First Year Students
What is programming?
Activities that resident assistants organize to build community
Should focus on building a community of trust and respect within a residence hall
Are essential to make students feel welcomed and part of a community
Why do we program?
Assist the new students in transitioning either from high school or into a new year of college by building a strong community
Make students aware of resources available to them on campus
Make students feel welcomed where they live
Open student's minds to new thoughts, ideas, and events
Puts you as an RA in more of a friend/companion role rather than an authority role at all times
Builds trust and earns respect in your community
Tips for programming
Keep programs inclusive so that all residents in your community will feel welcomed
Plan programs to meet the needs of your community and at a time when most are available! Vary this if able to.
Host a wide variety of programs so that your residents can become diverse in their interests
Be interactive yourself in your programs so that residents may get to know you on a deeper level
Advertise according to how your community responds best
Understanding your residents...where are they in their development?
Vicent Tinto
Vincent Tinto (1993) outlined three stages students move through: separation, transition and incorporation.
- moving away from home environment -> can be traumatic for some!

-torn between old and new environments

-when students have achieved full membership into the social and academic communities of the institution.
Concentrates on student's need to feel like they matter.

Students need to feel supported by peers, faculty, staff and family in order to succeed. This helps them make important connections.
Involvement theory: emphasized that students learn and develop when they become active in the collegiate experience.
Upcraft (1995) expanded on this theory when he stated 'The greater the quantity and quality of involvement, the more likely the student will succeed in college."
We all know that first year students are going through a transition from high school and home, to college, adult-hood and new expectations.

Programming is a way to educate our students about those expectations, get them connected, and have some fun!!
Programming Categories

Academic Success and Career Planning
Understanding Diversity and Identity
Student Engagement, Leadership and Service
Social Connections and Sense of Belonging
Knowledge and Skills for Self Management
Campus/Personal Safety
Appropriate spending
Laundry 101
Stress Management
Sexual Education

Alcohol Jeopardy
Relationships/Dating Violence
Study Skills
Conflict Resolution
How to get along with their roommate!!
Food Drives
Random Acts of Kindness
101 tools for tolerance
Love Yourself- Eating Disorder Awareness
Navigating Campus- Dude Where's my Class?
Eat this not that
Microwave Recipes
Stall Academics
Green Dot
Let's just talk about it
Earth Day
Dec the Halls
DPR: Developing Personal Relationships
Dealing with Homesickness
Zumba down the halls
Not sure what residents want to attend?

Send out a survey!!!
Explain what a program is at your first floor meeting.
Campus Policies Quiz
The possibilities are endless...
What are some of your ideas?

What would have been beneficial to you in your first year?
A note about transfer students
Students transfer for different reasons: moving from a community to a 4 year college, change of major, cost, personal reasons, etc.
About 1/3 of all college students transfer
Some transfer students may still be first year students, credit wise, but already have a general idea of what college is all about.
What they don't know is ROWAN!
Most of you will have an upperclass student, most likely a transfer student, in singles in your building or on your floor.

It is important that you work to establish a relationship with them too!
If you find yourself struggling to connect to a transfer student, talk to your supervisor. Maybe they can give you some ideas!
Meet residents where they are with technology...use what they know!
Create a Facebook group for your residents. Allow them to get to know each other, remind them of events happening in the building and on campus, invite them to places, advertise your own programs, and post announcements concerning the floor.
Advertise your programs and create a hashtag that allows your residents to participate in a particular program.
Use different apps to help interact with your residents in programs. Example: Shalana's RU fit program-My Fitness Pal.
Send out a monthly newsletter to keep your residents informed, as well as celebrate each other and share exciting updates about what is happening in each other's lives!
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