The Office of Campus Life, formerly the Office of Student Activities, was created as part of the restructured Department of Student Affairs. Collectively, the Student Affairs Office is overseen by Dean Josh McIntosh.
The goal of this new office is to promote better collaboration among students, faculty, and staff. Its other purpose is to expand student-oriented programs, bring in more student voices, and have really awesome events that everyone is psyched to attend.
“[We want] every student to feel a part of the culture; campus life is not just in one office, but all of us together,” Associate Dean of Students for Campus Life Kim Trauceniek said. “We’re working to make life at Bates a more positive experience. [Our office] will hopefully be a more vibrant place on campus where all voices can be heard.”
Trauceniek’s responsibilities during her first year at the college include working with students to plan and design extracurricular and co-curricular activities, including leadership development and serving as a liaison to the Outing Club.
One project the Office is working on is providing every student at Bates with their own academic student support advisor, who would stay with them throughout their time at Bates. “They [would be] like another sounding board for students,” Trauceniek said.
Trauceniek and Assistant Dean of First Year Programs Carrie Murphey ’06, who also works in the Office of Campus Life and is new to the office this year, helped create the new Orientation program. This year truly was a collaborative effort: JAs, RCs, OWLs, faculty, staff, and AESOP leaders came together to make it a successful event.
“Some families said this is the smoothest move in process they have ever seen, not just at Bates but at other institutions as well,” said Trauceniek.
The Office is in charge of planning weekend activities such as Late at Bates programs, the 80s Dance, and Wind Down Wednesdays. This year’s 80s dance will feature a
photo booth, 80s related games hosted by the Discordians, a costume contest, karaoke, trivia, sushi, and waffle fries.
Additionally, Trauceniek is creating Club 101 workshops to teach students budget management, mission statements, bylaws, programming, and leadership skills.
She is also working closely with Student Government to provide them with leadership programming and to send senators and the executive board on a retreat.
Assistant Director of Campus Life Qiu Fogarty oversees the daily operations of the office such as office maintenance and transportation. Last year in her position as the Coordinator of Student Activities and Leadership development, Fogarty worked with BEST (Building Essential Skills for Tomorrow) and Wind Down Wednesdays.
In her new role, she organizes off-campus bus trips, the Zipcar program, campus life vans, Bates Today, and late night programming (such as Late at Bates and Wind Down Wednesday and the new Tasty Fridays, which are similar to last year’s Taste of L/A.) Fogarty also helps Organize the Village Club Series and Chase Hall Committee, the Green Dot Bystander Intervention Program, and the Ronj.
“The reason behind that transition is to encompass more of the student experience that goes beyond just weekend activities and student activities,” said Fogarty. “We want our office to be a place where students can come no matter their background or interest.”
Even though the Office has undergone this change, Fogarty emphasized that they are fully prepared to be a resource for individual students and student groups. They still provide the same support, resources, and traditions as they did in previous years – just with a different approach.
Furthermore, Fogarty is expanding leadership opportunities for students and working more with the OIE.
The Office of Campus Life is working toward “more collaboration with other departments in the hopes of providing more opportunities for the whole student, not just the student who wants to go to dances and CHC events. We’re thinking more holistically than we have been in the past in hopes of having an office that’s bigger in terms of staff and more well-rounded,” said Fogarty.
There are lots of exciting changes coming from Chase Hall this academic year, moving toward strengthening the principle of inclusion that is the foundation of this institution.