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Residential Learning Communities

April 25, 2017

      One of the most important experiences in a college student’s life is the on-campus experience. Most first-year students live on campus. People often assume that if they submit their $250 housing deposit earlier than others, they are guaranteed the Residential Learning Community (RLC) that they want. However, that is not the case. As long as you submit your housing deposit and housing application by May 1st, all housing is fair game.

      The housing application consists of a series of questions that allows the Housing Office to pair you with someone who is similar to you if you decide to “go random” in terms of your rooming situation. If you have already submitted your housing application but met someone that you would like to room with, the easiest way to request each other would be for both of you to email, stating you and your potential roommate’s names, student ID numbers, and explain the situation.

      Within the housing system, first-year students have eight different Residential Learning Communities to choose from: Alpha, Communitas, CyPhi, da Vinci, Loyola, Modern Perspectives, Xavier, and Unity. You can check out the housing website here for more info, room layouts, and videos.

      Residential Learning Communities (RLC) are the themes of each dorm. Whether or not you do choose to live on campus, you are assigned to a RLC. Each RLC has a specific theme and on contrary to what some may believe, an RLC theme is not associated with a specific major whatsoever. For your Critical Thinking and Writing and/or Cultures and Ideas classes during your first-year, you are assigned to take these classes with other people in the same RLC as you, as a way for you to meet people who you live with and create connections. For many RLCs, there are specific events that are organized throughout the school year relating to the overall theme of the RLC.

      As many students do not know, the Alpha residential community is an acronym that stands for: Art, Literature, Philosophy, History, and Art History.  Alpha is housed in Graham Hall.  It often organizes events such as weekly discussions at Café Socrates, which allows students to come together to talk about a different topic every week.

Communitas is the Latin word for “community.”  Communitas is housed in Campisi Hall.  It is known for often organizing different trips in order to give back to the community.CyPhi is an RLC that focuses on sustainability and the arts. Cyphi is housed in Swig Hall, the only building on campus that is eleven stories tall.  The special thing about the CyPhi RLC is that there are three floors that have a specific theme. The SLURP floor is a community that focuses solely on sustainability. The SWAN floor is a community that consists of students who are interested in exploring nature. The SPARC floor is a community of students who are interested in music, arts, dance, photography, acting, and poetry.

The da Vinci RLC is a community that focuses on science and engineering. Da Vinci is housed in Casa Italiana Hall.  Although many may believe that only computer science, science, and computer engineering majors reside in the da Vinci RLC, it is definitely not true. Many students with different majors reside within the community.

Loyola values faith and social justice. Loyola is housed in Sobrato Hall and is the home of the campus Ignatian Center and hosts numerous events to promote civic engagement. Modern Perspectives focuses on leadership and ethics. Modern Perspectives is housed in Dunne Hall.  The RLC’s tagline “Discern.  Act.  Lead” promotes the fact that students should take action and lead to make positive social changes.Xavier is associated with the theme of faith, justice, and solidarity.  Xavier is housed in Sanfilippo Hall.  Within Xavier, there are often events such as discussions about some social justice issues happening in our society today, service projects, and many other events that directly relate to the main idea that Xavier was founded upon. Unity was founded upon the idea of diversity.  Unity is housed in McLaughlin-Walsh Hall.  Through the Unity program, students are able to explore various aspects of diversity such as social-economic justice and understand what is going on in our society today.




      Personally, as a current resident in the Alpha RLC and a resident for the upcoming academic year, I love the fact that although people not in our community think that we are quiet and keep ourselves locked away in our rooms because we live in suite-styled rooms, our community is actually the contrary.  The people on each floor in various wings of the building are very close-knit and often go to the RLC social events together or just go out to catch a movie in the theatres.  I think that the close-knit community that we have fostered is definitely something worth considering when you are choosing where you would like to live during the academic year, because it is a key part of the college experience.


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