William H. Thompson Scholars Learning Community
The William H. Thompson Scholars Learning Community is a shared living, learning, and mentorship experience for students who received the Susan Thompson Buffett Scholarship at the three University of Nebraska campuses. The Buffett Foundation selected the William H. Thompson Scholars as scholarship recipients, and the Thompson Scholars Learning Community will work to further support the Thompson Scholars during their academic career at UNK.
The Thompson Scholars include a number of UNK Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors who are not required to live in the residence halls or take a class with the Scholars due to being farther ahead in their program of study. However, these Scholars will be invited to participate in all programming opportunities the learning community provides this academic year, will be assigned a mentor to be of assistance throughout the academic year, and will participate in an undergraduate research project.
The Thompson Scholars Learning Community Freshmen are housed together at UNK. The experience of living and learning together will provide Scholars the ability to build new relationships and lasting memories outside of academic courses. Mentors will also live in the residence hall as part of the Thompson Scholars Learning Community. The mentors are upper class students who have experience living and learning at UNK, who will serve as resources for the learning community members. Mentors will play a very integral support role in giving academic advice, connecting scholars to many UNK resources, and building relationships. Special programs will also be presented by the mentors for the learning community members in addition to other events put on through the UNK campus.
Freshman Scholars in the Thompson Learning Community will take one class together in the Fall and Spring semesters of their first year. Additionally, scholars will be provided with the opportunity to receive undergraduate research stipends to do scholarly studies with outstanding UNK faculty members during the Spring or Summer of that year. Subsequently, they will take other coordinated coursework during their sophomore year. In sharing academic experiences, the Thompson Scholars have the opportunity to develop intellectually with one another. Academic learning communities have shown to increase student academic achievement, involvement, motivation, and graduation rates. Ultimately, by sharing academic pursuits, students are more able to connect their academic coursework to their personal lives, providing for a more meaningful college experience. Fuiture Scholars will be co-enrolled in one course per semester their freshman and sophomore years to enhance their education. They will also undertake a scholarly research/creative activity project during their first year as Thompson Scholars.
The William H. Thompson Scholars Learning Community was initiated in 2009 with the involvement of almost 50 Scholars. The learning community affords the scholars additional academic support from a faculty director and peer mentors, alongside all of the exceptional resources provided through the UNK campus for student success.
For more information about this learning community, please link to: http://www.unk.edu/a/thompson
Healthy Lifestyle Community
This environment helps students make a commitment to positive personal growth, with the goal of increasing one's overall wellness by enhancing a number of positive behaviors. The core of this community is the maintenance of a substance-free lifestyle. This substance-free co-ed-by-room floor provides a supportive environment for students who share similar values regarding alcohol, drug and tobacco use and the negative effects of substance use/abuse on the residential community.
Alcohol-free social events along with educational activities and exploration of self-help opportunities will be offered. The residents in this community agree not to consume alcohol or return to the floor under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Students must sign a substance-free agreement before they can be assigned to a room on this floor.
The goals of the Healthy Lifestyle Community are as follows:
- Help students in making adjustments to college life
- Meet and interact with peers
- Set goals for academic and social success
- Learn to be independent
- Develop relationships with University staff
- Assist students in leading a healthy lifestyle
Floor-sponsored programs/activities will revolve around the eight dimensions of wellness: