AUN has been described as a continuous learning environment where students are equipped with life skills to face real-world challenges.
In an interview, Vice President Byron Bullock explained that from the moment prospective students complete the AUN application form and get admitted, AUN awaits them with a sense of enthusiasm and excitement about coming into a new environment. It is an environment they are not familiar with, particularly for students who are probably very nervous when they get off the plane or when they arrive because they are going away from home for the very first time. AUN embraces them in a way that makes them feel comfortable and excited about this opportunity they are about to embark on.
The VP of Campus Life maintained that AUN has a responsibility to prepare students for challenges they are going to face in the real world.
“Our responsibility as a university is to move them from a state of dependence when they arrive at a state of independence when they graduate, so they can go out and feel very comfortable with what they do in the world and do that with a sense of ease and a sense of pride and determination.”
In AUN, he continued, the Residence Halls are equally avenues where students are prepared for those challenges they will face in the real world “What we find is that students spent probably 30 to 40 percent of their time in the classroom and the balance of their time is spent outside the classroom. To prepare them for the real world we have to be intentional about everything we do to develop them”, adding that in AUN, Residence Halls are not just a place where students sleep; they are where they continue their social development. “They learn to interact with people, they learn to interact with roommates, there are programs and activities going on in those Residence Halls to introduce them to all kind of opportunities to grow and develop in ways we want our students to be prepared as they go out to the real world.”
“There is a Residence Hall Council as well as Resident Directors who are adults working in the Residence Halls. Additionally, we hire Resident Assistants who are student staff members who assist with hall supervision. These students gain important life skills as they serve in a capacity that teaches them how to interact with their peers and how to manage and supervise their peers. These are skills that are necessary as they move into the workforce and assume supervisory roles after graduation.”
He further stated that AUN has a Residence Hall safety and security council that is there to bring residents together to talk about safety and security. “It is a place where they live, where the development that we want to happen continues outside of the classroom, the education continues to happen and we do that intentionally, we design those Residence Halls intentionally. We are very intentional about insisting that we have no more than 3 students in a room.”
Concluding, Dean Bullock maintained that in AUN, Residence Halls are designed in a way that students living in those spaces also have an opportunity for their own social life, interacting and spending time with one another, attending programs, developing programs of their own that they want to see in those spaces as well. It’s all intentional.”
Reported by Noel Sashi