Wednesday, April 18, 2012

An Open Letter to Future Residents on Roommate Selection

Dear Future Residents,

Throughout the year, I see all sorts of interactions between roommates in my role as a Resident Assistant (RA).  I have had the pleasure to witness many friendships develop in the rooms of the residence halls! However, I have also seen many fights over a variety of issues, ranging anywhere from “What time does the TV go off?” to “Whose turn is it to buy the orange juice?” 

Fortunately, most disputes can be mediated and the roommates are able to live in peace and harmony. Before you go committing yourself to a non-negotiable nine months of living with someone, here are a few pieces of advice from me to you:

When picking a roommate:

  1. Sit down and think.  What kind of room you want?  Do you want a place that is going to be a social hub? Or do you want a place that can be your personal retreat? Both are perfectly ok! You just have to figure out what you want in a living space. University Housing has some great points to consider when picking a roommate.
  2. Communicate! You will notice that throughout this letter, I place special emphasis on the word communicate! This is because it is the single best thing you can do with your roommate.  Communicate with your prospective roommates and be honest about what you are looking for. Believe me, they would rather you tell them what you want in June than in October.
  3. Remember, you don’t necessarily need someone who will be best friends with you; you want someone you can live with. When talking to prospective roommates, ask questions about how they live.  Favorite movie or color won’t matter when you can’t agree on what time the lights go out or how clean the room should be kept.

(BONUS TIP: Incoming students have created groups on Facebook and a #UGA2016 hashtag on Twitter to connect with each other. This would be another great place to see who’s coming to UGA next year!)

During the move-in process:

  1. Communicate! Again, communication is key. Talk with your roommate and set the ground rules early. Bedtimes, TV on/off times, guests and knowing what food is up for grabs are all discussions that should be had in the first couple of days.  Set the foundation early so that there are no surprises or hard feelings later.
  2. Talk to your RA. That is what we are here for! We will be more than happy to sit down with you and your roommate at the beginning of the year, even if there is no conflict, just to help you set ground rules and talk about the big issues. We are a resource put in place to help you so, feel free to seek our help!

What to do when a conflict occurs (you may see a trend here):

  1. Communicate! Talk to your roommate and talk early! Talk as soon as the issue comes up; don’t let feelings fester because they will only get worse.
  2. Talk to your RA. We will be more than happy to help you resolve a conflict. But remember, the first question we will ask you is “Well, have you talked to them about this?”
  3. Remember your rights. University Housing has set out a set of inalienable rights that you can expect in your room; you’ll learn more about these after you move in. However, don’t forget that you are not the only one who lives in your room; your roommate has rights and opinions, too.

I hope I have been able to point you in the right direction when it comes to picking a roommate. The biggest thing I can stress is to communicate! That is, without a doubt, the best thing you can do when it comes to sharing a living space. Talk to each other when selecting a roommate, when moving in and when a conflict arises. All disputes can be resolved; you just have to talk it out!

Best of luck in your freshman year!

Bradley D. Burzumato

Bradley Burzumato is a second-year Resident Assistant in Building 1516 majoring in History and Philosophy.

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Monday, April 16, 2012

New Updates from RHS!

By Megan Harrigan

Residence Hall Studios (RHS) is pleased to announce that it is now an official student organization with our own constitution. 

For the past three years RHS has produced segments to run on the housing television channel-12.  RHS stems from the Residence Hall Association (RHA) and we are excited about our new chair on the RHA executive board for the 2012-2013 academic year.  In the future, we hope to strengthen our relationship with RHA and the National Residence Hall Honorary (NRHH) at UGA. 

This semester has been a busy and very productive one for our members.  We have completed more projects this semester than any previous semester.  We are proud to be able to show our families and friends all of our hard work on the new RHS YouTube page! Some of our projects this year have included: Sh*t Bulldogs Say, Wallace (a short, student written film), and ECV’s Got Talent

RHS is always looking for new members who want to learn more about filming and broadcasting. Whether you want to act, be a part of our production team or enhance your skills in video editing our doors are always open.  We are located outside of Creswell hall next to the RHA office.  RHS meets every Wednesday in the studio at 6 p.m. See you there!

Megan Harragan is a third-year Psychology major and the Business Director of Residence Hall Studios. She joined RHS after being actively involved in theatre during high school.

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Thursday, April 12, 2012

New Details on the Pick-of-a-Room Contest

If you’re an incoming first-year student registered for housing next year, you should have received an e-mail yesterday that read:

Subject: Connect with University Housing for a chance to pick your room! 

University Housing at the University of Georgia would like to invite you to get connected with us!
In addition to your UGA e-mail account (our primary form of communication), we invite you to connect with us through our growing social network: 
Beginning today, Wednesday, April 11, 2012, and ending May 2, 2012, we will send out one special tweet and Facebook status update on Wednesday afternoons. Retweet our tweet to your followers or share our status update on your Facebook page to be entered for a chance to win your pick-of-a-room. A chance to win a guaranteed room for you and one roommate in our newest and LEED-certified residence hall, Building 1516, Myers Hall or Creswell Hall! Winners will be notified by May 11, 2012. 
Here are the rules: 
1. You must be a first-year student (freshmen) registered for housing. 
2. You must be following us on Twitter or like us on Facebook for us to see your retweet and/or shared post. 
3.Each retweet and/or shared post counts as one entry to the contest.
Each incoming resident can enter the contest pool a total of eight times. Good luck! We can't wait to have you on our campus! 

We have received almost 300 entries already! Here are a few more added details that have come up since the contest began:

If you are a private tweeter who follows us, we can tell that you have tweeted us, but we can’t see your tweet! That means we can’t add your name to the contest pool. Please consider making your Twitter profile public so that your tweets can be entered in our pool.

On Facebook, while your profile does not have to be public, our post that is shared on your wall can (and must) be set to public. We completely understand that your privacy settings on Facebook are important and can be a little tricky. Here’s how to change your post to public:

Hover over the top right-hand corner of your post and a little grey box will appear with a drop-down arrow.

Click on the arrow to reveal your privacy settings.

Check the icon for “Public” with a globe next to it.

The box in the right-hand corner of your post controls your privacy settings.

After completing those quick steps, your shared post should be public and we’ll be able to enter your name into our contest pool.

Good Luck!

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Thursday, April 5, 2012

Family and Graduate Housing giving residents a chance to GROW!

Last week, Family and Graduate Housing (FGH) residents lined up for the opportunity to stake their claim on a chance to grow…  literally.

Residents received stakes during this year’s “stake your plot” on March 23, 2012, that will identify their 10 ft. by 10 ft. plot in FGH’s community garden.

Most residents grow items to serve their families for meals, but some flowers are grown there too, according to Kim Ellis, assistant director for Family and Graduate Housing and coordinator for sustainability at University Housing.

This year, the garden, which is located behind Building Q on Rogers Road, has 82 plots available for residents to use. The garden conveniently has compost and a nearby water source.

In addition to serving as another great opportunity for residents to be sustainable, the garden offers somewhat of an aesthetic quality to the FGH community as well. It’s not unusual to find a resident in a deck chair just admiring the view.

Check out some of the pictures from “Stake Your Plot” below.

FGH Residents line up for "stake your plot" on March 23, 2012

Residents receive their stakes
A resident carefully selects his garden plot

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Monday, April 2, 2012

D.A.W.G. Days Highlights

From a present-day representation of the Underground Railroad to experiencing the world one sense down, Diversity Awareness Week at Georgia was extremely successful in the Residence Halls. 

Residence Hall Studios was on the scene to capture first-hand reactions to our featured event: Shock your Senses! Take a look at the clip below.

Here are just a few pics of all the interactive learning that went on throughout the week.

The twists and turns of life turn into an obstacle course when you're in a wheelchair. Residents learned how it feels to navigate without some of their most valued senses during University Housing and RHA's Shock Your Senses!

How does life treat you when you are hearing impaired?
Residents found out during Russell Hall's Game of Life program last week.

Check out all the pictures in our D.A.W.G. Days Facebook album!

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