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Untitled Document

Residential Council Minutes :: October 14, 2008

Present: James Reed (Chair), Greg Anderson (Policy Chair), Mark Fuller (Program House Chair), Ben Lowell (Lottery Chair), Jillian Robbins (Secretary), Sophie Asher, Al Carter, Jerry Cedrone, EJ Chung, Paige Hicks, Mannan Jalan, Chaz Kelsh, Adam Lewin, Mike Sokolovsky, Christine Sunu, Jane Zhang

Guests: Dean Tom Forsberg

Overview:

  1. Mark will present the program house review form sent to program houses and explin the current status of program house review
  2. Updates on the Gender Neutral Housing Committee
  3. Senior lottery numbers

1. Program House Review (presented by Mark)

  • the form itself has not undergone substantial changes; however, some changes have been made in the program house review process
    • instead of 'passing' or 'failing' a program house, we will now make recommendations to ResLife about the program houses
    • we are now asking the program houses to submit a copy of their bylaws
    • we are suggesting that program houses submit the individual community service hours completed by each of its members, but we are not requiring this
      • we will evaluate the responses we receive and determine if we want to modify this aspect of program house review in the spring
  • responses from program houses will be due November 7 (one month after they received the form from ResCouncil)
  • Monday, November 10th, from 6 - 8, the Program House Committee will meet to review the information submitted by each of the program houses
    • anyone on the council who would like to attend this meeting is welcome to do so
    • here, we will determine if we have further questions for any of the houses or if we need more information from any of the houses
  • if any house is called before the council, they will be asked to do so on Monday December 1 between 6 and 8 pm
    • THIS MEETING WILL BE MANDATORY FOR THE ENTIRE COUNCIL

2. Updates on the Gender Neutral Housing Committee:

  • Gender Neutral Working Group is composed mostly students that have since graduated
    • these students completed the groundwork and much of the research for the implementation of the gender neutral housing policy
  • the group is still meeting to get a sense of what else can be done to continue developing the policy and expanding its impact on student housing
    • approximately 1/3 of all doubles on campus were made gender neutral
    • this year, there are 4 gender neutral doubles: 1 in Caswell, 1 in Marcy, and 2 in Harkness
  • their most recent meeting was October 9th
  • spoke of potentially modifying the first year housing questionnaire
  • the group is looking into opening more gender neutral bathrooms in the dormitories

3. Senior Lottery Numbers:

  • in the past, ResLife has released the priority numbers of rising seniors before the formation of lottery groups
    • is this custom still necessary or relevant? should this practice continue?
  • in the past, off-campus housing occurred after the housing lottery,
    • therefore, seniors with low priority numbers would look to move off-campus
  • however, now, off-campus housing procedures occur before winter vacation and lottery occurs in the spring
    • this practice has continued because of tradition, but is it still necessary?
  • for seniors to live off-campus, they must apply for off-campus housing in October/November, so it is fairly improbable that the early release of priority numbers in the spring (pre-lottery) will influence many rising seniors to move off-campus
    • the changes we are making to the off-campus housing permission process would leave little or no room for a student to acquire off-campus housing permission in the spring
  • the posting of priority numbers for seniors before the lottery is irrelevant unless it occurs at the same time as the off-campus housing permission process

4. Dates of 2009 Housing Lottery

  • when should lottery occur? is having lottery on Monday and Tuesday (April 6th and 7th) with Passover beginning Wednesday night unfair to those students observing Passover?
  • Dean Bova's suggestions: to host lottery Thursday the 3rd and Monday the 6th of April or all day Sunday April 5th
    • we need to keep in mind that having space between the two nights is important for sophomores to do proper housing research
    • if we hold the lottery on Thursday April 3rd and Monday April 6th, we can host dorm tours and hold 'office hours' over the weekend between the two dates
  • we aren't averse to holding lottery Monday April 6th and Tuesday April 7th, but support Dean Bova's proposal to have lottery occur Thursday April 3rd and Monday April 6th

Policy Committee Update:

  • Jillian proposed creating a policy for RPLs to be notified if freshmen move into or out of their dorms
    • this will be further discussed in Policy Committee and presented to the council at a later date

The ResCouncil Website:

  • how can we improve our website and make it a valuable resource for students to use year-round as opposed to only during 'lottery season'
  • what should be updated and added?
  • currently, the Policy Committee does not have a webpage
  • a webpage for program house 'guidelines' exists but there is no information about the Program House Committee
  • should we create a 'question box'?
    • this could be very useful during lottery time
  • what do people go to the website for? to read the minutes?
  • there is a security concern about posting dormitory floorplans online year-round, so they therefore cannot be included in the website

Update from Dean Forsberg:

  • he met with Facilities Management and Public Safety, and between now and the end of the semester, they will go into all bike rooms in the dormitories and clean out the bikes that are not being used
  • ResLife will send emails to all students living on and off-campus, informing them when this cleaning will occur so that students will have adequate time to move their bicycles
  • they will clean out 5 or 6 bike rooms a day on scattered days between now and the end of the semester
  • any bicycle remaining in a bicycle room that is being cleaned will be removed
  • the specific hours during which this cleaning process will occur will be clearly announced
  • this plan only includes bicycle storage roms located in residence halls
  • there are no current plans to clean outdoor bicycle storage facilities

End of Meeting

Submitted by Jillian Robbins, Residential Council Secretary 2008-2009