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Greek Community

Meeting with Colorado College’s Greek Community

17 October 2012

Attendees:  17 students and 4 representatives from the strategic planning committees

Extending Our Reach

For what should CC be known?

  • Well-roundedness.  However, there is still work to do since some CC groups are, in fact, not well known or they do not have an effective voice.
  • Global perspectives.
  • Engagement.
  • Nerds.
  • Students as true academics/young scholars.
  • Passion (related to work, play, extracurricular activities).
  • Vibrancy.
  • Uniqueness (Block Plan).
  • Individualism. (Greek leaders can foster this individualistic nature, and can enhance continuity after graduation to counteract the Block Plan’s “chopped up effect.”)

 

 

Place

Community

  • The Block Plan.  Can foster an anti-social environment.  There is more of a drive to learning course material than one in getting to know fellow students.  The Block Plan can be too rigid.  It is very “scheduled.”  The routine becomes: class, lunch, Greek, homework, reading, dinner, study, bed.  The block plan experience varies depending on the area of study; for example, sciences are very different from the humanities.
  • Greek Life.  A strongly social activity that adds much to the learning, college experience.  One way to create strong and lasting relationships.  For some, Greek life is the only thing that will continue after college.  It is a way to continue the educational experience.
    • Student Mentorships.  Very important.  Add much to the learning, college experience.  One way to create strong and lasting relationships.
    • Alumni.  Have a strong connection to Greek life.  Need to recognize and foster this connection at CC.  We could do a better job of this, but the responsibility falls to the Greek community itself.
    • Culture of Mystery.  CC creates a culture of mystery.  Students follow the crowd but do not really know what is going on.
    • Student Support Services.  Could be a little better. 
    • Greek Community.  All programming is for seniors and centers on the house.
    • Seniors.  There need to be more things to bring seniors and other students together.  Why not have a “Rastall dinner” just for seniors once a block to get seniors back on campus?  The recent inaugural service event was very good at bringing people together.  It contributed to the community and was a good way for students to give back to the school.  It would be good to have regular service events.
    • International Students.  Are there ways to connect international students to American students and to create a better student community?
    • First Mondays.  A very effective way to bring the community together.

 

Communication.  Done mostly by email, but email is generally quickly scanned and deleted.  Personal connection is far more effective.  What about an online calendar?  Using media other than email or Facebook is important.  Flyers are still very effective.  Reading a flyer on the bathroom wall is effective. Placing flyers in a Worner mailbox, though, is usually not too effective.   Students, however, should not have a feeling of being inundated! Less, sometimes, is more.  There are a lot of CC resources – but many students are not aware of these resources.  They are underutilized.  CC needs a better way to communicate about its own resources.

 

 

Engaged Teaching and Learning

Does CC prepare you for life after college?

  • Internships. Really help, but other than that, CC does do not provide many options.
  • Practical Experience.  “CC has not given me much practical experience.  I would like to know basic life skills, things like insurance, house buying, etc.   Workshops or a half-block course on these topics would be excellent.”  We could bring alumni on campus for such workshops.  Half-block course/workshop for juniors or seniors.  Good way to get the community involved in the college, particularly small business owners, car mechanics, homemakers.  Developing such a half-block program would give community an excellent opportunity for involvement. Could help to overcome the “mystery” of the college.
  • Job Skills.  To help prepare for the workforce, it would be helpful to get advice on how to move from a three-hour intensive class to an eight-hour workday, to know what to expect and focus on.
  • Resumé Development.

 

Study Abroad

  • Returning from Abroad.  How we deal with students returning from study is a big issue.  Students tend to be just left or ignored when they come back.  There is not much time for or focus on introspection or reflection.  There is little or no meaningful sharing.  Students do give a presentation, but this is too formal. We need to do research to find out what is really needed in terms of helping returning students.  There should be good transitioning programs to help students talk about the study-abroad experience.   Often there is no or little commonality that returning students have.  CC could create a listserv for communication or to foster connections on study abroad experiences.  
  • Preparing to go abroad.  We need more personal interaction when preparing students for going abroad.  Students could do so on their own, but it is overwhelming.

 

11-Block Year.  Pros: Could be good for mental health.  May alleviate some of the pressure students feel.  Could help with greater consistency throughout the year.  Would provide more flexibility.  One could take off blocks without tuition expenses, which would be very helpful.  Could allow for a “three-block-abroad” option.  Cons: How would summer programs fit within an 11-block year.