HPC encourages conversation, dorm leadership
Alexandra Muck | Friday, December 9, 2016
As co-chairs of the Hall Presidents’ Council (HPC) Elizabeth Feeley and Christina Fernandez said they are focused on making HPC more well-known on campus.
To reach this goal, they said they are incorporating more leadership development into the program while also working to foster a strong sense of community in HPC by encouraging hall presidents to learn about other hall events during the HPC weekly meetings.
“It’s a bigger job than I think people realize when they’re elected,” Fernandez said. “You’re working with your rector and your hall staff as well as your hall, so you’re maybe that gap between your hall staff and your residents.”
To help the presidents and vice presidents with this task, Fenandez and Feeley introduced HPChat, which is a conversation time that HPC members can use to discuss problems or situations in their halls that they may want guidance on.
Another new program in HPC is a GreeNDot bystander intervention training.
“If we’re going to be a leadership development platform, we have to not only talk the talk, but walk the walk,” Feeley said. “All the hall presidents have to be those people in the hall who have the training necessary to be a student leader and a good face on campus.”
Fernandez and Feeley also kept several aspects of HPC that were introduced last year, including Hey Hall, a part of HPC meetings where hall presidents talk about the history and culture of their hall, and hall council visits.
“That’s our purpose, and our job is to knock on the doors of the halls and see what’s actually going on there,” Feeley said.
One of the most well-known aspects of HPC is deciding Hall of the Year. The HPC chairs, along with the four HPC board members, two senators and a judicial council member, decide the Hall of the Year.
Forty-five percent of the Hall of the Year score comes from the Rockne reports hall presidents turn in each month. In these reports, hall presidents have the opportunity to reflect on their goals for the month and whether they achieved them and set goals for the next month.
The remaining 55 percent of the Hall of the Year score is from a presentation each hall president and vice president gives at the end of the year. In the presentation, each hall has 15 minutes to recap their year. Last year, a new component was added where two to four residents could give testimonials.
Another large aspect of HPC is helping the halls with signature events. The co-chairs’ jobs are to empower the presidents financially and with guidance to run their events.
Fernandez and Feeley both said they loved their experiences as hall presidents and hope the current hall presidents have the same experience.
“It really is a transformative experience [being hall president],” Feeley said. “You become the person you’ve always wanted to be in terms of leadership.”