By Denton Josey, Features Editor
In addition to the physical renovations on campus over the summer, the department of residence life made some changes. There are three new staff members, including the new Director of Residence Life, Education and Housing, John Delony.
Delony comes to ACU from Lubbock Christian University where he was the Dean of Student Life. He also did his undergraduate work there, while getting his master’s from Texas Tech University. He is currently working on his doctorate from TTU as well.
Two more new staff in the residence life department are Ashley Hansen, the new residence hall director for Morris Hall, and Chris Windsor, the new residence hall director for Mabee Hall. Also, Angela Bearden is now at Barret Hall, and Michelle Lessly is the new residence hall director for Sikes Hall.
“I inherited a killer staff; they are smokin’,” Delony said.
“They are making my transition incredible.” Delony said they are reexamining student life on campus. “Working on community building is a big deal to me.”
Not only did personnel change occur, but even the practices of residence life are being looked at.
Delony said everything from policies to living arrangements and halls is being examined. He said the department is looking to build on the legacy built before and make certain it coincides with the new century vision. “We’re going to really focus on getting involved and promoting campus community,” he said.
Delony said the training for residence hall directors is more focused now. “They’re real intentional about seeking out relationships with the residents,” he said.
Ashley Hansen, the RD for Morris Hall, is a 2006 Family Studies graduate from ACU and is currently working on her master’s in higher education. She said one of her goals is to work with the residence assistants and assistant director to build relationships and foster community in the residence halls.
One of the ways residence life is improving the social aspect of on-campus living is to make more time for sophomores to be together. This year the sophomore residence hall lobbies will be open 24/7 in order to allow for more study time and hang out time for coed groups, as opposed to year past when the lobbies would close even though sophomores don’t have curfew.
Hansen said residence life tries to get to know people on a deeper level so they can help them, not to be intrusive or come across as trying to police the activity.
Hansen said her goal is to help her residents as much as possible and make sure that “they grow not only academically but spiritually and emotionally as well.” Delony also said, “the same community my RD’s build in their residence halls, we want to build across this campus,” Delony said. “Build a campus culture of community.”