It can be easy for someone to go unheard when living in a large community of students, but the Humber Residence Council (HRC) works to ensure that student voices are amplified.
The HRC incorporates students and Residence Life staff members to provide a positive environment in residence, holding events ranging from food drives to theme weeks and athletic events. HRC members are also specially trained to assist residents with concerns outside of the council’s mandate, much like a Residence Assistant (RA).
“I hope that (HRC) can kind of foster a really strong Humber residence environment,” said Residence Life Coordinator Jeck Baconga. “We are so segregated from everyone else on campus and I would love for our department, not just staff but also students, to understand that they can get their voices heard.”
Baconga said that programs and events facilitated by the HRC are intended to encourage students to get involved in the residence community. “The goal is to run residence-wide programs for all the students within the buildings.”
Most recently, the council ran a full week of Halloween events including a pumpkin carving contest, a pie-eating contest and a door-decorating contest. The effort culminated with a haunted walk in the Humber Arboretum, a scary movie night and a costume contest.
“If students want to get involved they basically just need to show up to these events and participate,” said Baconga. “All we’re trying to do is ensure that if they can’t find friends on their floor that they can find friends in another building.”
Baconga encourages students to talk to HRC members if they have any concerns.
“I think having these kind of programs helps encourage students to come out of their room, especially when they don’t have family in the area or if they’re international students, and meet someone they never would’ve met otherwise.”
RA Cara Vanmassenhoven said that residence-wide events like the ones that the HRC hosts help students interact more with people in their community. Social events give students “a break from studies and helps with the transition from home to living in a residence community.”
The HRC is composed of two representatives from each building and three executive positions. The building representatives are elected through a residence-wide vote in mid-September.
“They have an amazing team working together to make a comfortable, fun and safe environment for students,” Vanmassenhoven said.
Second-year Film and Television student James Kervick said that the HRC outdid themselves last month and that the Haunted Arb walk was scarier than the last.
“The costumes people were wearing looked too real,” Kervick said. “I had trouble sleeping that night.”