Living and Learning Villages help students get the most out of their NC State experience. While many campus partners have probably heard of the Village concept, some may be unfamiliar with the specific Villages and their purposes. Stay tuned as we spend some time profiling our Villages to help you get a better understanding of the many offerings University Housing and its partners provide through Village living.
The Arts Village is home to creativity. Through engagement with various forms of art across campus, residents are encouraged to participate in theatre, music, dance, crafts, and visual art. Residents of Arts Village also receive free tickets to ARTS NC STATE and Triangle Arts performances to interact with guest artists.
“The residents in the Arts Village are very welcoming and creative,” said Christina Ujj, Community Director for Alexander and Turlington halls. “They are involved in their community, and they have taken ownership of it. I also think it is great that there is such a mix of majors, but the residents all share a love of the arts.”
Established in fall 2007 as a partnership between University Housing and ARTS NC STATE, residents initially lived only on the third floor of Turlington Hall. However, the Arts Village continued to grow in popularity each year until the number of residents in the Arts Village expanded to the entire building in fall 2009.
“I really wanted to live on campus,” said junior Lauren Pearce, an Animal Science major. “It’s easier. I was really involved in the arts in high school since I played the cello. I wanted to be around people like that. There’s no other place like this. It’s the people in the building that make it really special. It’s a big family and the reason I haven’t left. I lived in the same room all four years.”
Residents are required to take The Arts Forum course the fall semester of their first year in the Arts Village. The interactions in this course along with the sense of community fostered by hall-style living in Turlington are the main reasons so many students continue to live in the village after their first year.
“There’s always something going on,” Pearce continued. “The Arts Village is your home away from home. You will make friends. I’ve stayed in the community because I like the place.” She is also the Hall Council President for the Arts Village. “I like to help guide the people coming in. I want to make this the best experience you have in a dorm. I want to pass it down to new residents. It’s important.”
Residents of the Arts Village also build community through their common love of art. “I was involved in marching band, theatre, and chorus in high school,” said Jessica Caudle, a sophomore Social Work major. “Every single person in the Arts Village likes some form of art. You already have something in common with everyone. You become instant friends because you have that connection to art. It’s a really close community.”
Arts Village residents are not only required to complete The Arts Forum course in the fall, they must also complete the Creative Thinking course in the spring and attend six elective arts events throughout the semester. As an additional perk, Arts Village residents receive free tickets to a variety of performances, have priority use of the Masini Practice Room in the Price Music Center, and get priority seating in some arts-related academic classes.
“The free arts events really connect you to different parts of campus,” Caudle said. “I also really loved participating in the African dancing event. It was so much fun and is something I totally wouldn’t normally do.”
A true connection to art and a family of friends who support that creative drive is important to many residents of the Arts Village. A convenient on-campus location and free tickets are all great benefits of the village, but a culture of creativity helps students grow within the arts community.
“I was afraid I would stop participating in art in college,” Caudle said. “But I’ve stayed connected to art through the Arts Village. I play marimba and am part of the color guard. I would definitely recommend the Arts Village. It’s been the greatest experience I’ve had in college.”
Currently, the Arts Village partners with ARTS NCSTATE, including Center Stage, The Crafts Center, the Dance Program, the Gregg Museum of Art and Design, the Music Department, University Theatre, and University Housing to encourage students to stay engaged on campus with the arts community. To apply, visit MyPack Portal.
The Global Village provides a unique living experience for students interested in expanding their horizons. With a focus on global awareness, this living and learning village helps residents meet new friends from many different countries, explore different cultures through programs, excursions, and group discussions, and practice their language skills.
“The Global Village has a mutual benefit for international and American students,” said Selena Zeng, a freshman Management major with a concentration in accounting and business from China. “I can become accustomed to American culture without feeling lonely or nostalgic. I am also exposed to more cultures and can explore international cultures I wouldn’t have a chance to learn about otherwise.”
Not only do residents learn about new cultures through regular programing, they also learn from their roommates and suitemates. International and American students are paired as roommates in hall-style living at Alexander Hall or suite-style living in Carroll Hall. Until last year, Alexander Hall had been the only on-campus international residence hall since 1975.
“Beginning in fall 2005, Alexander Hall joined the living and learning village family as Alexander Global Village (AGV) to have a more intentional effort to acclimate international students to U.S. culture, to expose U.S. students to other cultures, and to help the entire community to understand and be aware of global issues,” said Christina Ujj, Community Director for Alexander and Turlington halls. “In fall 2012, the Alexander Global Village officially kicked off as Global Village to include three floors in Carroll Hall. The expansion occurred because there had been a long waiting list to get into the Global Village when it was only housed in Alexander.”
Even though Global Village is split between two different buildings, the village fosters community building through village-wide programs. “I like all the different cultural events,” Zeng said. “There are a lot. My favorite is the dinners. We help make a traditional dinner, whether it’s Mexican, Chinese, Latin American, etc. Then after dinner, we introduce our culture to the group. It’s a lot of fun.”
Building a sense of community where everyone feels included is essential to Global Village life. “The Global Village is very different,” said Hannah Dewane, a sophomore History major from Greensboro, N.C. “It’s more social and community-based. It’s really like a family. You would think that people would clique up, but everyone hangs out together. It’s really easy to make friends .The Global Village has enhanced my college experience ten-fold.”
Watching the community come together throughout the year is a huge part of what makes the Global Village so special. The group’s dynamics change each year, but the end result is always the same and one of the main reasons why many students continue to live in the village after their freshman year.
“My favorite part of working with the students in this village is that the residents truly create a family,” Ujj said. “Watching students from around the world bond together and form friendships that outlast the year and semester is awesome. The residents take ownership in this village and are here to have the world at their doorstep.”
Now in her second year of living in the Global Village, Dewane is a Student Ambassador in Alexander Hall. As an ambassador, she supports international students as they acclimate to American culture. Even though she helps international students avoid culture shock, she finds that international students influence her own perspectives.
“I’m definitely not a typical conservative American anymore,” she said. “I’m thinking about switching from a History major to a business major so I can travel and meet more people from other countries. Life in the Global Village has definitely given me a more global perspective.”
To live in the Global Village, students must attend the Global Village Fall Orientation before classes begin and must participate in at least five Global Village Hall programs each semester. The Global Village works closely with NC State’s Study Abroad Office, the Office of International Services, the College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHASS), and University Housing.
“I really like how everyone is open-minded and appreciates diversity,” Zeng said. She is also a member of the Hall Council and the Global Village representative for the Inter-Residence Council (IRC). “The Global Village is a good place where everyone wants to be. Every new idea is welcome, and it’s a really fun place to gather around.”
To apply to the Global Village, visit MyPack Portal.