Two appointed to oversee learning villages

Do you like to help others or the planet? Beginning this fall Tech will have learning villages in both New Hall dormitories to increase student involvement. Learning villages have been used in Ivy-League colleges such as Oxford and Cambridge Universities. There will be two parts of the villages separated between New Hall North and New Hall South: environmental and service. Tech recently selected two faculty members to be involved with the villages. Paula Hinton will be in charge of the service village, while Lenly Weathers will be part of the environmental village.

“We want it to be their idea,” said Charles Macke, director of Residential Life, referring to students.

The learning villages are open to all students and faculty.

“It is an additional chance to connect with students,” Macke said.

Weathers said, “My vision for the Green Village is that of an active, stable and supportive community populated by students who are interested in living a more sustainable lifestyle, are interested in promoting sustainable development, embrace an eagerness to learn, and the willingness to help others learn, seek to enrich the village by organizing and participating in formal or informal social, cultural and recreational village activities.”

Each of the villages will have its own budget. The budget will allow them to work on their choice of projects pertaining to their village. The budget could also be used for trips or activities planned by students. They will develop a name, logo and mascot.

Eventually, they want the villages to venture into intramurals, debate teams and engineering contests.

“Developing a strongly student-led atmosphere, especially with respect to social, cultural and recreational activities, will be essential for the LLC (villages) to thrive,” Weathers said.

The villages are created to help students find like-minded friends and faculty. Macke said that if everything worked out, there could be a village designated to each dorm on campus. By doing this, it will create more opportunities for students to make friends.

“We got to give it a chance. It’s going to be slow going,” Macke said. Residential life is going to start advertising for the villages soon. When future students sign up for housing there will also be information on the learning villages.

For more information, call Macke at (931) 372-3414.