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Sunday, May 26, 2024
The Observer

Hall President's Council facilitates dorm programming

Every spring, each of the University’s 29 undergraduate residence halls elects a president and vice president to preside over the dorm’s government and to represent the dorm on Hall President’s Council (HPC).

According to the council’s co-chair, senior Meredith Fraser, HPC meets every Tuesday evening and consists of the all dorm presidents and vice presidents as well as an executive board made up of two co-chairs, two social chairs, an athletic chair and a financial chair — each of whom formerly served as hall vice presidents or presidents.

The group has an advisor from the Student Activities Office, Casey St. Aubin, but HPC “[operates] pretty independently, but [is] a branch of Student Government that deals primarily with residence halls,” Fraser said in an email.

She said the council exists to help hall governments identify what their individual residents need, and also to address the concerns of the residential student community at large.

“Our main goal involves hall leaders helping to meet the needs of residents,” she said. “This is always something that we can improve upon, so our Board works alongside the residence hall leaders to maintain a consistent resident focus. … This year we have been able to continue to build a relationship with rectors as well as other members of the Office of Housing that share with us a common purpose.”

Sophomore Annie Batcheller, president of Pangborn Hall, said she enjoys being on HPC because it allows her the opportunity to see the programming other halls sponsor.

“The greatest thing about being on HPC has been seeing the work and time that goes into each dorm's events,” she said in an email. “Sitting on HPC has opened my eyes to just how many things happen on campus.”

Dillon Hall president junior Kevin Esherick added the council also serves as a network for different hall governments to collaborate and share ideas.

“In my opinion, HPC’s most important function is to serve as an enabler for student leaders,” he said. “It gives hall presidents access to resources, ideas and networks that are instrumental in producing programming for our halls and the rest of the campus community.”

Looking forward in the semester, Fraser said she and co-chair Seamus Quilty want to continue working with other groups and institutions on campus.

“ … We have a few projects in progress,” she said. “We are hoping to continue to strengthen relationships with other campus organizations and hall communities, including rectors, hall staff teams and student government. We would like to increase awareness for our HPC mission, which involves every hall resident.”

One of the council’s most visible projects, however, is the annual awarding of Hall of the Year. Each spring, a committee consisting of HPC’s executive board, the judicial council president, and two student senators select the overall Hall of the Year, Men’s Hall of the Year and Women’s Hall of the Year. Fraser said HPC was looking into reevaluating the Hall of the Year selection process.

“ … We are working to determine if there is any possibility to enhance the hall community evaluation process that culminates in the Hall of the Year award,” she said.