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Residence Hall staff attend conference
Thursday, March 31, 2016

Residence Hall staff attend conference

Residence Life staff attending conference (left to right): Front Row: Wascar Almonte, Molly Mellott, Colleen Holcomb and Kristen Brignone; Middle Row: Patrick Toscano, Patrice Douglas, Kerri Williamson and Rhianna Wing; Top Row: Christian Salvati, Emily Donals, Maimouna Sylla, Laura Werwinski and Katherine O'Hara

Ten Resident Assistants (RAs) and three Residence Directors (RDs) recently traveled to SUNY Cortland to attend the Cortland Residence Life Conference. Resident Assistants Patrice Douglas and Emily Donals, along with Residence Director Colleen Holcomb, were selected to present at the conference.

The theme of the conference was “Space Jam,” and the major topics were teamwork, inclusion language and diversity. Through the sessions that they attended, the staff learned things which they plan to incorporate into their Residence Halls. The Resident Assistant Advisory Board asked the attendees to speak about what they learned from the conference and Gregory Hall Resident Assistant Katie O’Hara, said, “My big takeaways from the conference were about using positive, inclusive, and person-first language. I learned how to do this is a formal and informal setting and in different ways to make my peers aware of their own use of this type of language.” Eisenhower Hall Resident Assistant Patrice Douglas noted, “My biggest takeaways from the conference would have to be my greater understanding and appreciation for ResLife. We have an opportunity to be a part of something bigger than ourselves with a lasting impact campus-wide. From this, we are able to connect with fellow RAs no matter where we attend school. When someone says that they are an RA, there is a sense of family and comfort from that moment on throughout the rest of the conversation. We are the Clark Kents of Fredonia. When things go wrong or right, RAs are at the forefront ready to protect and serve the needs of our residents.” Gregory Hall Resident Assistant Wascar Almonte also noted, “I learned how introverts and extroverts function. Now I have a better understanding of why some residents act the way they do.” Gregory Hall Resident Assistant Laura Werwinski added, “The conference showed me how much Fredonia really has to offer. There are a ton of campus resources not only for RAs, but for all students, that are not utilized as much as they should. A lot of other schools don't have these, so we really should be taking full advantage of them. I also learned how much community surrounds being an RA. There are students all over the country who deal with the same things I do as an RA, and get just as much enjoyment out of it. It truly showed me what a great asset it was for me to become part of Fredonia's ResLife family.”

Other students and directors attending the conference were Residence Director Kristen Brignone of Schulz Hall, Residence Director Rhianna Wing of Alumni Hall, Resident Assistant Christian Salvati of Gregory Hall, University Commons Resident Assistant Emily Donals, Schulz Hall Resident Assistant Maimouna Sylla, Nixon Hall Resident Assistant Kerri Williamson, Kasling Hall Resident Assistant Molly Mellott and Chautauqua Hall Resident Assistant Patrick Toscano.

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