The Residence Life & Housing Student Leadership & Service awards are an opportunity for the department to recognize the significant contributions our students make within their residence hall communities. The awards ceremony is held annually every May. A visual showcase will precede the formal awards ceremony to share the impact the nominees have had in their residential communities.
See below for biographies of the 2015–2016 Student Leadership & Service Nominees!
Samantha L. Cantor
Hometown: Marlboro, New Jersey
Major: International Relations
Organizations/RSOs: Student Alumni Ambassador and National Society of Collegiate Scholars
Advice you'd give to someone to make the most of their res hall experience: Definitely my number one piece of advice is to say hi to everyone you see in the hallways. As soon as you say hello you build a connection, and from there can build friendships. I also would say to not stay in your room but go study in the lounge, do a lap around every floor, see who's door is open and pop your head n. There is no harm in being friendly. A third piece of advice I would say is to be friendly to your neighbors, you never know when you might run out of tissues and not have time to go to Walgreens!
Major: Human Services; Clinical Concentration; Psychology minor
Involvement: University of Delaware Alternative Breaks member; spent spring break in Washington D.C. working with homeless infants, Gamma Phi Beta Sorority Member: Standards Committee, Women's Week Committee, Sexual Offense Support, Peer Mentor for FYS
Living in Lane with my awesome RA, Rebecca Robbins has made the transition into a college a breeze! It was great to be able to have a friendly a familiar face on the floor that was always there to answer questions. Living in a residence hall with a RA as a resource definitely helped connect me to campus and make Delaware my home away from home! If I could tell an incoming freshman one thing, it would be to try new things! College is your opportunity to explore, discover and create yourself.
Hometown: Hockessin, Delaware
ADPi sorority, UDSAA, UDress, RUF Bible Study
I have grown as a person so much from living in the residence halls. I have become more independent and responsible living away from home, but have also found a sense of community here among my fellow students. I can’t imagine not living on campus as a freshman because I feel that I made so many memories and friendships that I’d never have if I didn’t live in the dorm. Even though I was tripled and space was tight, I enjoyed every minute of my time in Ray street.
Gabrielle Nicole Kowalski
Hometown: Pike Creek, Delaware
Major: Exercise Science
Involvement:Advocacy Chair and Executive Board member of AMT, Technical Staff with HTAC, UD Physical Therapy clinic aide, Intramural Volleyball team
My residence hall gave me a family. Although I live in Delaware, I came to UD knowing none of the people on my floor, knowing not that many people in general, and now I come home everyday to friends that I love. My friends have even given me the title of "floor mom," a name that makes me laugh out loud but inwardly smile every time I hear it. My experience at UD could never have been as great as it is if I didn't live in Redding 3C.
Hometown: Newtown, CT
Involvement:University of Delaware Emergency Care Unit, Canine Companions for Independence, Love your melon, Students for Haiti
My residence hall has given me my best friends including my amazing RA. To make the most of your residence hall experience strive to make a relationship with everyone on your floor, leave your door open, and always be there to help anyone in need.
Hometown: Severna Park, MD
Major: Public Policy
Involvement:MAN (Men's Action Network) and POW (Promoters of Wellness)
How the residence halls have enhanced my UD experience:
The residence halls have introduced me to some of the best, most encouraging and inspiring people I've ever met. They're the people that have come to support me the most and have truly shown me what living and interacting with a community is supposed to be like. Though we all have varying interests and come from different backgrounds, everyone is supportive of each other, both academically and personally.
Hometown: Chester Springs, PA
Major: Marketing & Finance
Involvement:Blue Hen Leadership Program, Blue Hen Marketing Club, Rock Climbing Club, First Year Seminar Instructor, Lerner College Peer Mentor, Video Game Tournament Club, and hopefully the Blue Hen Investment Club.
I cannot imagine being at UD and not living in Ray Street 2B with Kelly as my RA. I have made so many friends here that I will stay close with as far as I can see into the future. The connections and friends I have made here that remind to the friends from my hometown that I've known for years. My floor has shaped the classes I take and expanded the extra curricular I take part in. Whether it be intramural flag football or rock climbing in the gym, I know I'll always be doing something with people from my floor. I hit the jackpot in terms of where I lived this year.
Hometown: Kinnelon, New Jersey
Major: Hotel, Restaurant & Institutional Management
Involvement:National Society for Minorities in Hospitality (NSMH), DSharps Acapella, Each One Reach One (EURO)
Going with random roommate selection was a big decision for me; I had always imaged that I would want to find the perfect roomie before hand to ensure a friendship. When I found out that my two roommates in my side of the suite had not only known each other, but were best friends, I freaked out more than a little. Now more than half way through my second semester of freshman year, my roommates are my best friends. It sounds "oh so cliché" and it is something that a college freshman won't believe until they experience it themselves. You have to come out your shell sometimes to make things work, and that is okay. Make small talk, crack a joke, ask someone if they want to get lunch one day, join a club you've been curious about (even if said club sends you 10 emails a day for the rest of your college career). Not everything is going to work out either, and that is also perfectly acceptable. You are only going to get out of your residence hall experience what you put into it! Simple advice. I'm just starting out here at the University of Delaware, but since I did so much this year in terms of talking to people and getting involved in my residence hall, I can truly feel like it is home.
Independence West 4th floor
Redding 3C is a community of 40 dedicated Honors students who acclimated to the college environment and to their new peers with ease-- offering guidance to one another since day 1.
To date, we have held at least 5 You + 2 and SIF programs.
Redding 3C had a 100% community response rate on the Fall Floor Feedback survey, and was the second community in Redding to attain this goal.
We were the top-earning residence hall community in the Hair for Hope Change for Change competition.
The Redding 3C Community met my Fall Opening goal of having at least 90% of residents involved in a Registered Student Organization or in-complex involvement opportunity by the end of September 2015.
As the RA of Redding 3C, I could not be more impressed with the climate of inclusion that has developed on our floor. These residents have truly made their home here at the University of Delaware, and they regard their community with respect and courteous support of others.
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York
Major: Human Services: Administration and Family Policy
Organizations/RSOs: NET Captain, Sisters On the Move, Research Assistant with the Infant Caregivers project, ASPIRE, Rail intern, Volunteer with the Student Association for the Education of Young Children, Current winner of Miss Black and Gold under Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. UD 2016 Service Learning Scholar.
UD Experience: Living in a residence hall allowed me to get out of my comfort zone and learn how to be apart of a community out side of my family. It taught me responsibility and time management with the reassurance that I would have at least one person to help me if I messed up. It is an AMAZING experience that everyone should have.
Advice: Don’t be afraid to talk to everyone because thats the only way you will make friends.
Hometown: Huntington, New York
Major: Biological Sciences Education
Organizations/RSOs: Secondary Educators of Tomorrow
I've really loved living in a residence hall for the past several months at Delaware. I feel like I'm really connected to other students and that I have an entire network of peers that I can turn to for various resources. My fellow students within the honors program are helpful with homework, they're wonderful friends, and they're all around great people that motivate me to be involved on campus and help me do my best. I'm so grateful to live in such an involved and dedicated community.
Hometown: Langhorne, PA
Organizations/RSOs: BHLP (Advanced Tier 1), RAILE, Tri-Beta Honor Society, UD Swing Club, Phi Delta Epsilon Fraternity, Making Doctors
Living in George Read has helped me to adjust to college life by bringing me out of shell and meeting new people. It also allowed me to try things that were offered at UD that I might not otherwise. Especially, living in the Biology LLC has eased the academic challenges of being a biology major. There is also a community of people going through the same things you are which quells your anxieties by knowing that you are not alone.
Hometown: Ivyland, PA
Major: Chemical Engineering
Organizations/RSOs: University of Delaware Marching Band, American Institute of Chemical Engineers, Society of Women Engineers, Orthotics & Prosthetics Club, Engineers Without Borders
My advice: Keep an open mind. You may not think that forming a large study group, or going out to dinner with people you don't know that well would be awkward, and maybe even a bit counterproductive, but you never know what new information could come your way. You may understand something better, gain a new perspective on something, or find a friend who's from the same hometown. Always be up to trying new things with new people. Forging new friendships was the most valuable part of my Freshman year, and if I never ventured out to try something new, or hang out with people I didn't know, I would never have found the people I now call my family.
Hometown: Dover, DE
Major: Marketing, double minor in Art & Advertising
Organizations/RSOs: Community Chair in James Smith, Intervaristy Christian Fellowship, Blue Hen Marketing Club and Photography Club
My UD experience has been greatly enhanced by living in my residence hall this year. It has given me the opportunity to be a leader and helped me develop my passion for Residential Life. I have hosted a variety of events in my community. Learning how to advertise those events and get residents to come out, has given me some real-world experience pertaining to what I am studying! I am so glad that I have lived on campus the past two years and will continue to next year as an RA.
Hometown: West Windsor, NJ
Major: Business Undeclared
Organizations/RSOs: Harrington C Governor (C3), Blue Hen Marketing Club, Entrepreneurship Club
The advice I would give to someone would be to say yes. I was watching a presentation one day and I heard the speaker say something unique. She said to try saying yes for a day. So I tried it. When someone asked me to help take out their trash, I helped them. When someone asked me to help connect them to the Wi-Fi, I assisted them. These small tasks let the person I was aiding know that I can be, and am a caring person. I want to lend a hand if I can. By saying yes, I have made a ton of friends living not only in my residence hall, but in residence halls across campus. My advice to any new person living in a residence hall is to say yes; the benefits are endless.
Major: Computer Science
Organizations/RSOs: NET Captain, UDress, Taek-won-do Club
By living in my residence hall, I see how I could bring a positive impact to my community by using all different kinds of opportunities. Enjoy the experience, and get involved. You will absolutely enjoy your floor/community by involvement, and if you want to do something, just do it and never afraid of failing, because the RAs and RHCs always got your back.
Hometown: Long Valley, NJ
Major: Exercise Science BS, Women's Studies Minor
Organizations/RSOs: Making Doctors, Resident Student Association, Christiana Residence Advisory Board, Pre-SOMA Society
Living in my residence hall has allowed me to grow not only as a person but as a leader. Because of the experiences I've had so far in my residence hall, I have learned invaluable lessons in communication, leadership, and management. I've seen myself grow so much through my experiences here and I'm positive that the past nine months will have a lasting impact.
Hometown: Liyang, China
Major: Three languages
As a first year RA, I learned a lot from my residents, staff members, supervisor (RHC) and CC. I really appreciate this experience and I will do better next year. My advice: Attend more events on campus and do more SIFs to achieve a better floor bounding and community bounding.
C4 Make and Take Reusable Canvas Bags
It was put on by Natalie Criscenzo, the Sustainability Chair of C4. People were able to come and decorate their own cnvas bags and take them home to promote using them on campus and reduce single plastic bag use.
Brian Stephen Lindner
Hometown: Middletown, NJ
Organizations/RSOs: NET Captain, Philosotea, Boardcrafting Club
My UD experience was enhanced by living on campus because I've gotten to meet and form bonds with some of the most amazing people and I have new opportunities to push myself every day.And my advice to someone to make the most of their residence hall experience is to get as involved as possible with their floor and not give up when it comes to encouraging everyone else to be engaged and active in their community.
Hometown: Setauket, New York
Major: Communications, Music Management minor
Organizations/RSOs: Programmer in SCPAB, Student Alumni Ambassador, media crew in Mitchell Hall
I have met amazing people on my floor who have ended up being my best friends that I am continuing to live with for the next couple of years. The community is amazing and without my RA and the other residence, UD would not feel like my home. My advice: Talk to people! I was terrified to move in but once I started making connections I quickly felt at home in the residence halls.
Hometown: Wilmington, Delaware
Major: Computer Science
Organizations/RSOs: RSA, CCC, NET, NRHH
My UD experience has been enhanced by living in a residence hall through the communities it has engulfed me in. Through living in a residence hall, I received a lot of support from my community, as well as guidance from mentors in my complex. To make the most of your residence hall experience, you should try new things and take advice from your RA and other people that have more experience in college than you.
Night with a Model
Created by Renee Meyers, this event was really fun because people were able to be as creative as they wanted to be with modeling clay. They could mold the clay and keep it, as well as paint it. Phil Botta made a sloth and painted a background picture for his animal. It did not matter if you were artistic, just as long as you tried. It was a very fun and welcoming atmosphere.
Independence Complex Coffeehouse!
(From Alicia Fox) March 1, 2016: by far one of my favorite days of my sophomore year. I started the night setting up coffee, hot chocolate, and tea, waiting to see how many people would actually show up to Coffeehouse. When residents from all over Independence Complex started to trickle in, I could not contain my excitement. Within 15 minutes, there were about 40 people there, ready to watch and listen to other residents share their talents. The performances were all amazing and it was a great night!
Independence Complex Coffeehouse!
Regina Rubino is the Events Coordinator of George Read South 1st floor. In the fall, I held an SIF Halloween party for the floor. Our Fall Spectacular was a great success! When students arrived, they painted and decorated mini pumpkins while enjoying some apple cider and doughnuts. Once everyone was present, we began the games. We formed 7 teams of 6 students and competed in 8 games, based on the show Minute to Win It. The highlight of the event was definitely the mummy wrap! Overall the event was a success and was, in my opinion, the best event of the year. My floor was extremely cliquey at the beginning of the year, and this event was a way to unite the floor. The teams were completely random, so everyone got a chance to compete with students they might not have been as close with.
Mental Health Awareness
Many college students suffer from anxiety, depression, or other mental illnesses. Many students however don't recognize symptoms in themselves or others or are not aware of resources to get help. So I put up three discrete folders with various notecards containing contact information for campus and off-campus resources and also different inspirational quotes or sayings written by various people on my floor. This was students can grab any information if needed or grab a nice saying if they have a stressful day, as all of us do. Students don't have to go very far to find out where they can get help and they can do it in a easy way. I hope this initiative raised awareness, educated my floor, and helped raise overall morale. (From Sarah Warkentin)