CORVALLIS, Ore. – A new residential program at the College of Health and Human Sciences at Oregon State University provides a complete living/learning environment that seeks to give students the kind of experience they might associate with a small liberal arts college.
Starting this term, Buxton-Hawley Residential Hall became a part of a new program called LinC Live (Learning in Communities), which was created by a team at HHS with the support of Cindy Empey, director of residential life, and Tammy Bray, dean of HHS.
More than 100 students from HHS – mostly first-year students – moved in to their new residential hall on Sept. 21, making HHS students the largest group from one single college. There are 425 total students in Buxton-Hawley.
Liz Gray, assistant dean for academic programs at HHS, said LinC Live is part of a much larger strategic plan at the college. LinC Live, Linc Lead and LinC Learn constitute a fully developed model that gives students an enriching and intimate experience at one of OSU’s fastest-growing colleges.
OSU’s Housing and Dining Services is moving toward the learning/living model in step with national trends. Studies from the American Association of College and Universities and educational researchers such as George Kuh show that these type of residential models result in students with higher grade point averages, better relationships with faculty, and a higher graduation rate.
One model for how this can work at OSU is Weatherford Hall, home of the College of Business’ Austin Entrepreneurship Program. There, students develop business ideas in incubator spaces, see visiting lectures as part of the Fireside Chats and interact on a daily basis with entrepreneurship faculty.
“In every exit study that is done, students say one of the most meaningful experiences they have in their college career is their interactions with their professors,” said Kathy Greaves, a senior instructor in HHS and the new faculty-in-residence with LinC Live.
As the faculty-in-residence, Greaves will have a personal, daily interaction with students. Greaves has taught human sexuality and family development courses in the College of HHS for more than 13 years.
Greaves said LinC Live will include several formal educational programs in the Buxton Hall Lounge, as well as a new idea called Chew & Chat. At the Chew & Chats, faculty members will have dinner in West Dining Hall and students will be invited to join them in an informal discussion.