Faculty-in-Residence announced

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The SMU Residential Commons will host 11 Faculty-in-Residence, who will help to create a sense of community in the new living quad. (ELLEN SMITH / The Daily Campus)


SMU announced its 11 faculty members who will serve as the pillars of the new Faculty-in-Residence program to begin with the unveiling of the new residential commons for Fall 2013.

Assistant Director of Residence Life Jeff Grim said the program is meant to “break barriers for students” and engage them more directly and personally with their professors, not only from their major, but from all schools at the University.

“In college, students are trying to be successful, questioning identity, creating careers, exploring spirituality, and learning about subjects that they have never heard of before,” Grim said. “Now we have more members of the SMU community that will be closely tied to a student’s exploration.”

Grim described the program as “creating a living environment that matches [SMU’s] interdisciplinary curriculum and connects both in-class and out-of-class learning,” competitive with some of the most prestigious universities across the nation. SMU joins Harvard, Princeton, Vanderbilt and others as one of the country’s learning institutions invested in a residential experience that matches the “academically rigorous in-class” environment.

Opportunities for exploration on and off campus will be a highlight of the new Faculty-in-Residence program, as well as “discussions on current events” and “a plethora of other opportunities” to fully engage students.

Associate Director of Residential Life, with Grim, Jennifer Post said the program had more “outstanding” faculty applicants than even anticipated, and all 11 of “the faculty selected are truly tremendous” and “dedicated to student success.”

“SMU students are incredibly lucky to have such an amazing opportunity to get to know such great faculty outside of the classroom,” Post said. “The faculty members will be able to provide unique experiences for students that residents might not otherwise have.”

Post explained the program is meant to enhance the overall experience of SMU students by giving them a direct connection between their academic goals and their day-to-day living.

One of the biggest goals is to allow the development of “a more academically-
focused campus.”

“We know that students have better academic experiences when they know faculty outside of the classroom,” Post said. “The addition of Faculty-in -Residence and Faculty Affiliates will help enrich…[the University outside] the classroom and give students an even better experience.”

Beyond the academic focus, Grim said the new design of residential life will allow students a well-rounded, well-balanced way of living on campus.

“Some [faculty] will be bringing partners and children, while others will be bringing a pet, and all have unique, creative ideas of how to engage students in their living environment,” Grim said. “We couldn’t have asked for a better group of faculty to lead us into the Residential Commons initiative.”

Check out The Daily Campus over the next few weeks for upcoming profiles on each of the 11 selected faculty members.

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