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The Elon Commitment

 The plan by neighborhood: The Oaks

The Oaks Apartments are an extremely popular on campus apartment option. Students enjoy the freedom and independence of apartment life, while still remaining right next to campus. In order to better meet demand for junior/senior housing and better meet junior students’ needs, the committee has recommended the construction of additional apartments (the Senior Village), housing the majority of juniors living on campus in The Oaks with a new program focused on preparation for graduate school and careers.

The OaksHighlights of the Oaks Apartment Neighborhood include:

  • support (and possibly office hours or even satellite offices) from faculty and staff with expertise in guiding students through the beginning and middle stages of preparing for graduate school and careers
  • potential experiences on and off-campus to assist students in pursuing career or graduate school paths.
  • annual series of workshops created with student input and leadership
  • possible Faculty in Residence (FIR) to support the juniors living in the Oaks and help the Residence Life staff in coordinating faculty/staff workshops
  • improved insulation within apartments in order to reduce noise and vibrations.

The junior year is a time for new experiences, focused academics, career planning, and greater independence. In order to better meet demand and junior students’ needs, we recommend that the majority of juniors be housed in The Oaks and a new program, focused on preparation for graduate school and careers, be added.

Oaks apartmentThe junior year represents a shift to new levels of social and intellectual independence. Juniors study more deeply in their majors, take on independent study and research with faculty mentors, and delve further into applying knowledge and preparing for future career or graduate study. Juniors also appreciate greater privacy and less intervention from administration. Therefore, it makes sense to place juniors in apartments that support more independent living; while also providing these students with greater support in their preparation for career/graduate school.

This more focused programmatic support should come directly from faculty and staff with expertise in guiding students through the beginning and middle stages of preparing for graduate school and careers. Satellite offices (or at least regular program space) should be added for Career Center staff. Careful thought should also be given to providing juniors with enhanced experiences on and off-campus to assist them in pursuing their chosen career or graduate school paths, drawing greater connections between their academic courses and their experiences out of the classroom, and making the most of study abroad/practicum and internships/etc. An annual series of workshops should be created with student input and leadership.

Enhancing the Oaks facilities might include:

  • Adding a Faculty in Residence (FIR) for the Oaks. The FIR would work with general studies to track and support the juniors living in the Oaks and help the Residence Life staff in coordinating faculty/staff workshops.
  • Providing better insulation in the Oaks apartments in order to reduce noise and vibrations.