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Case Western Reserve University

School of the Year
Table of Contents
Like the Cleveland Skyline,
Case Western Reserve University Residence Hall Association
is strong and stable, standing out against the surroundings.
Over the years, through reinvention and revitalization, Structure and Vision
we have come into our own, creating an organization 2. Our Foundations
built on respect and a desire to serve the community. 3. Executive Board
We continuously change to reflect our residents’ 4. Community Councils
needs while honoring our history. 5. General Body and Committees
RHA prides itself as one of the most involved 6. Goal Development and Achievement
and respected organizations on campus. We 7. Summer Projects
represent residents’ interests on numerous 8. RHA Elections
campus committees and are known for fostering Programming
skilled leaders. In 2009, we won the CAACURH 9. RHA Programming
Student Award for Leadership Training and 10. RHA Programming (cont.)
for the past two years we have been 11. Council Programs
contenders for the CAACURH Building Block 12. Council Programs (cont.)
Award. We have cemented our foundations Advocacy
in programming, advocacy, and leadership 13. RHA Advocacy
development and have constructed RHA to 14. Challenges
be a leader at CWRU and in the region. Leadership Development
The Residence Hall Association has 15. Member Training
worked diligently since 1992 to create 16. Ongoing Development
positive change at CWRU by advocating 17. Recognition & Liasions
for residents and programming events to Outreach
build community. RHA at CWRU did that 18. Community Service
and more during the 2010-2011 school 19. Collaboration
year and we are excited to share our 20. Campus Involvement
success with you. 21. Sustainability & Co-sponsorships
22. Budget and Fundraising
All the best, Regional and National Involvement
The RHA Executive Board 2010-2011 23. National Residence Hall Honorary
24. Of the Month Awards
25. Regional Involvement
26. National Involvement
Letters of Support
27. Skip Begley & Rachel Tuttle, RHA Advisors
28. Alma Sealine, Director of Housing
29. Susan Nickel-Schindewolf, Associate Vice
President of Student Affairs
30. Laura Imbirowicz, CAACURH Regional Director 1
Our Foundations
Following the 1967 federation of Case Institute of Technology and Western
Residence Life at CWRU
At Case Western Reserve
Reserve University to form CWRU, each residential area retained its own University, about 3000 students
governing organization (and a bitter rivalry). In 1992, the organizations united live on campus and choose to live
and became the Residence Hall Association. Since then, RHA has fervently worked in the halls throughout their entire
to become the primary advocate for residents’ needs and concerns at CWRU. undergraduate education. The
RHA is one of the forefront student organizations at CWRU and the only student residence halls are separated
organization that focuses on programming, advocacy and leadership development into two areas: the North Residential Village and the South
for the residents. RHA understands the importance of maintaining strong, Residential Village. There are 18 residence halls and university-
owned apartments on north campus and 7 residence halls on
supportive residential communities and encourages students to define their
south campus. The residence halls offer residents traditional
community experience. single or double room, suite, and apartment style living.
RHA strives to offer innovative programming that is relevant to the residents of Residence halls are split up into residential colleges per
Case. From enhancing traditional programs to bringing new programs to life, RHA experience, with the first-year, second-year and upper class
is known for quality, accessible programming that caters to the needs and desires experiences all focusing on different developmental areas. First-
of the residential communities. year residential colleges have unique themes to create a sense
RHA also benefits the residents by generating tangible change in the halls. of community, while second-year and upper class halls focus on
Through sustaining strong, collaborative relationships with campus administrators, increased independence of residents as they progress in their
RHA helps to improve hall conditions and housing processes. undergraduate education. RHA is comprised of representatives
from each residential community.
Finally, RHA provides opportunities for students with a broad range of
leadership experiences, offering both a safe space where
new leaders can grow and enabling skilled leaders to First-Year
develop in new ways. Members learn a variety of Residential
skills through their involvement in RHA, including Colleges
delegation, goal-setting and accountability.
These skills allow them to better Mistletoe – Service Cedar – Arts Juniper – Diversity
represent their residents and gain
valuable expertise for
their future
endeavors. Complexes

Carlton Road Clarke Tower

Upper Class

Murray Hill Village at 115

(2nd year & upper class) & University Apartments

President, Lillian Zamecnik-
Acts as the organization and public head of RHA by creating,
The Executive Board
implementing, and continuously improving the vision of the The RHA Executive Board serves as the leaders and campus
organization. Also, works with other student group leaders and representatives for all of RHA. Council members look to the
administration to improve the university residential experience executive board for guidance, as well as other university
via programming, advocacy, and leadership development. organizations and administrators. The Board has regularly
been asked for input in prominent issues and decisions that
Vice President of Internal Development, Mara Gallagher- affect the whole university. The Executive Board has made it a
Focuses on the strengthening of RHA through its members, serves priority to act as a strong resource for the RHA membership
all the members of RHA General Body and all of the councils, and to help them develop as leaders within their communities.
and supports the councils' work with their respective
Each Executive member is required to:
• Attend weekly Executive and General Body meetings
Vice President of Residential Relations, Samantha Nardone- • Meet with advisors and RHA President biweekly
Acts as a liaison between the student body and Dining Services, • Serve as a liaison to a council and attend council meetings
Information Technology Services, Campus Services, and any
other administrative office or official affecting the quality of • Lead a standing RHA committee at least once a week (with
life of the residents. Also, informs residents about issues the exception of VP Admin and President)
regarding campus services and residence life. • Hold 2 office hours/week to be a present resource
Vice President of External Communication, Kaitlyn Estes-
Collaborates with student groups and campus committees,
promotes the efforts of RHA through intentional communication
with the CWRU campus, provides service and sustainability-
focused opportunities for the residents, and represents
CWRU RHA as National Communications Coordinator.

Vice President of Programming, Stephanie Chung-

Assesses the educational and social needs of the
residents, coordinates traditional and original programs
that respond to those needs, and upholds the RHA Vision
of Programming through all levels of RHA.
Skyscraping Moment: Executive Transitions
Vice President of Administration, Winston Liu-
Prepares and maintains the budget and financial data of Following the 2011 Executive Elections, the incoming
the organization, manages the co-sponsorship process executive board underwent a rigorous transition, which ran
and subsequent collection of feedback, serves as from the conclusion of elections up until their inauguration
secretary at General Body meetings, and documents RHA (late February-early May). After being elected, each new
events. member was given a flash drive containing information and
advice relevant to their new position. The new members also
RHA Advisors, Skip Begley & Rachel Tuttle-
Oversee major organizational decisions, boost the morale met frequently with their outgoing counterpart to discuss the
and develop the group dynamic within RHA Exec, and position and ask questions. Finally, the new board attended
provide contextual or historical knowledge to the Board. all spring executive meetings, where they were able to
observe the current board and contribute to discussions.

Primary Responsibilities
• Lead the council in building a strong residential community Community
Vice President • Bring the needs of constituents to the council’s attention, organize
(One per building) collaborations and assist with council leadership development
Social Coordinator • Develop social and educational programs and seek program feedback
Secretary • Maintain an record of council attendance and meeting proceedings
RHA is comprised of seven councils, one per residential
Treasurer • Keep record of all financial transactions and accounts
community. Each council supports its community and helps it
• Submit information to RHA newsletters and promote council efforts through
Public Relations Chair
bulletin boards and involvement in Family Weekend and Homecoming to thrive by providing interesting programs and engaging
opportunities for community members. Councils also work to
Advocate • Communicate student concerns to council and administration and serve as
a representative on Residential Relations and food committees address any issues in the community by working through the
Sustainability Rep • Support and develop sustainable initiatives and attitudes in the halls appropriate avenues to make changes a reality. Most
Community Service Rep • Coordinate community service and philanthropy events in the community
importantly, the council is responsible for representing its
• Organize OTM submissions and create a detailed form of record of the
residents, working to connect with them and to understand
Historian what they really value in their residential experience.
council's goals and accomplishments as a resource for future councils
Upper Class • Fulfill the presidential responsibilities if the president is absent
Community Council

Vice President
Only Upper Class

• Manage recruitment throughout the year to maintain a full council

Experience Modeling
House Rep • Be aware of student concerns in respective buildings
(One per • Fulfill the responsibilities of the Social Coordinator, PR Chair, Advocate,
The Office of Housing & Residence Life utilizes the CWRU
house) Community Service Rep, Sustainability Rep, and Historian Experience Model to guide the residential program at Case. This
year RHA adopted this model in our member training programs
and council development plans. RHA relied on experiences while
reassessing council positions in the summer of 2010. First year,
Skyscraping Moment second year, and upper class students require varying levels of
Defining Council Advisors support and developmental experiences. Understanding this
progression has led to more deliberate programming and
RHA recently met with Residence Life staff to effective representation of the residential communities.
create a set of expectations and
recommendations for council advisors. In the The First Year Experience focuses on students’ personal and
past, advising has been inconsistent toward academic transformation. Council programs are designed to
councils due to unclear parameters. New connect students’ with their peers, communities, and academic
expectations for advisors included a minimum support to help their transition from high school to college.
time commitment and council communication
guidelines. Added recommendations The Second Year Experience helps students to narrow, focus, and
included advanced support such as holding become more engaged with a career path, friends, or the
1-on-1 meetings, and attending General university community. The second year council programs help
Body meetings and council programs.
students gain self-knowledge, make conscious decisions about
Defining advisor responsibilities has better
equipped councils to focus on serving their direction, and create a vision for the future.
residents and has boosted their leadership
development drastically. Currently, all The Upperclass Experience strives to help students turn their
advisors are meeting our expectations and personal vision into reality and prepare for life after Case.
many are following our recommendations. Upper Class Community Council programs support the themes of
reflection, preparation, and celebration.

General Body and Committees
The General Body (GB) serves as the governing assembly of the entire Residence Hall Association. Its
members include the Presidents and Vice Presidents of every community council, the Executive Board, and
At-Large Representatives (members who serve without being a council president or vice president). GB
meetings allow attending individuals to discuss, question, and pass on important information to their
respective councils and communities. A typical meeting includes the following:
• Roll call and passing of last week’s minutes
• Co-sponsorship requests from campus groups seeking monetary and/or non-monetary support
• RHA business, such updates on campus policies, discussions on structure, and legislation
• Leadership development session or guest speaker
• Updates on important committee projects
• Advisor moment of weekly wisdom and member recognition

CWRU RHA would not be able to take on such a diverse range of initiatives if not for our four standing committees. The Internal Development, Residential Relations,
External Communication, and Programming committees are composed of members from each community council and work with their respective Executive VP on
various projects. All committees meet once a week for about an hour, immediately preceding GB meetings.

The Internal Development (ID) The Residential Relations The External Communication The Programming committee is
committee represents the (Res Rel) committee focuses on (ExCom) committee interacts with responsible for planning large,
"Leadership Development" pillar work relating to RHA's a variety of topics, including campus-wide events that reflect
of RHA. It propels RHA members "Advocacy" pillar. Res Rel works community service and the interests of the residents,
to the next level of leadership to address student concerns by sustainability efforts, RHA public upholding the third RHA pillar of
within the organization and into communicating with administration relations, and connections "Programming". Programming
new leadership opportunities and relaying new information to between RHA and other student committee members learn various
around campus. ID is focused on the students. This committee helps organizations. ExCom has played programming skills through
planning RHA-wide training RHA stay connected to student a major role in developing an rotating projects, such as logistics
events, member and community opinions on their CWRU RHA philanthropy, improving lines coordination, budgeting and
recognition, and ongoing residential experience and has of communication between RHA advertising. They consistently
leadership development become an important resource and CWRU residents, and develop strong programs that
opportunities. for administration in encouraging sustainable practices expose students to RHA in a fun
understanding how to in each community. ExCom is not and exciting way.
improve those associated with a specific RHA
opinions. pillar, but instead incorporates
important aspects of all three.

Goal Development and Achievement
The “How”
In the summer of 2010, the RHA Executive Board met to develop Intentionality
goals for the coming school year using a SWOT (Strengths, • Develop Council Advisor and Resident Assistant Liaison
Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis and evaluation. expectations
The resulting goals were classified into two themes—What and How. • Integrate the Housing & Residence Life Department’s First-Year,
Second-Year, and Upper Class Experience model in council
The “What” are the three overarching goals that describe what RHA • Establish ideal council activity for council training to assist
has strived to achieve – being a resource, strengthening RHA councils with program planning and addressing advocacy issues
presence, and communicating with the community. The “How” depict • Adopt a philanthropy to support in Cleveland with values that
parallel those of RHA
the strategies RHA wanted to utilize in achieving these goals. Every
• Promote care package fundraising efforts at the Letting Go
RHA initiative should incorporate intentionality, collaboration, and Session for parents during new student orientation
reflection. Organizing the goals in this manner allowed them to • Edit “Council of the Year” Award rubric to place emphasis on
become ingrained in CWRU RHA’s operations. quality of council efforts and initiatives
• Develop an effective sustainability subcommittee
• Offer members Safe Zone training to better support the
The ”What” residential community
Being A Resource Collaboration
• Develop Pre-Liaison Liaison (PLL) position to assist Council • Work with Orientation, Board Games Club, Greek Life and
Advisors with member recruitment Chess Club to make Casino Night bigger and better
• Create standard expectations for Executive Liaisons
• Write joint resolutions with Undergraduate Student Government
• Make the office a welcoming space during office hours
• Begin conversations with the Interfraternity Congress (IFC) and
• Increase awareness of executive board office hours Panhellenic Council (Panhel) to facilitate organizational Achieved
• Establish the “Programming-Advocacy-Leadership Development In Development
discussions and programming
Library”—a collection of resources for RHA community councils
• Increase the impact of the Amazing Race at Case through
Strengthening RHA’s Presence
collaborating with IFC, Panhel and University Program Board
• Distribute RHA swag and unique advertisements frequently
• Tackle community issues and improve co-programming with RAs
• Participate in important campus events such as the Leutner Dining
Hall ribbon cutting and LGBT Candlelight Vigil • Increase efforts to collaborate with NRHH to support OTM In Development
• Promote RHA initiatives and events through a regular newsletter Achieved submissions and recognition efforts at CWRU
• Change second-year and upper class election processes to better
suit individual residential communities, increase council retention • Utilize feedback results from prior years to guide summer
and foster stronger recruitment organizational development projects
• Create a year-long public relations strategy In Development • Consistently evaluate and provide suggestions for programs
Communicating with the Community and organizational operations at multiple levels
• Redesign the website to reflect the structure of RHA and increase • Review and assess organizational and position-specific goals at Achieved
ease of navigation mid-semester and winter executive retreats
• Utilize the RHA member and all-resident email list serves to Achieved • Complete program planning forms for organizational memory
distribute important information • Create an ad-hoc committee to revise Executive elections
• Establish an organizational Google calendar for all members procedures
• Contact other affiliated RHAs to create collaborative • Develop and complete periodic needs assessments for the entire In Development
In Development
opportunities CWRU residential community

Summer Projects
The Residence Hall Association of Case Western Reserve University made sweeping advances as an organization through their efforts in the summer of 2010. Charged
with three very challenging and progressive projects, the Executive Board made important changes in the nature of RHA. This helped the Board stay connected to the
mission of RHA as well as establish accountability and familiarity with their team dynamic. By reevaluating council structure, resolving problems in the second-year
experience, and redefining the purpose of RHA programming, the board was able to develop the organization at a level unattainable during the school year.

Second Year Councils Council Positions RHA Programming

CWRU’s second year communities have The project reviewed the positions and structure This project was a complete reassessment of RHA
traditionally been more difficult to engage than of CWRU’s community councils and was a follow- Programming. In recent years, RHA Programming,
other communities. This is due to reasons such as up to a former project from the summer of 2009. particularly on an all-campus level, has been
the geographical divide between second-year viewed as relatively weak by CWRU RHA
The project team evaluated the impact of these
communities and the suite-style living standards and was due for revision.
changes a year after their implementation and
arrangements in second year halls.
made necessary edits to the positions and position As a result, the purpose of RHA programming was
The project resulted in several recommendations responsibilities using feedback, interviews from redefined and a list of all of the qualities that
for second-year councils to help them become former RHA members, and personal observations. each program should attempt to incorporate, such
more successful in their communities, such as as “intentional,” “multi-faceted,” and “personal”
As a result, major changes were made within the
collaborating with the other sophomore councils was created. The team also made a step-by-step
council positions, including the separation of the
and Residence Life staff. The project leaders also programming guide that outlines every task
Outreach Representative into a Community
worked with the VP of Internal Development on necessary for a program to be successful,
Service Representative and Sustainability
clarifying the role of and providing training for including time-lining, detailed budgeting, and
Representative and the refinement of the role of
the RA Liaisons. feedback/progression.
council Vice Presidents to increase collaboration
The team also recommended changing the and council development. Additionally, the project yielded a prototype
elections process for second year councils, so that Needs Assessment to better identify the character
The members took their project a step further by
council presidents would be elected in the spring and needs of the resident population. This will
creating a tangible and accessible resource for
for the following fall. This would allow council help RHA create programs that are more relevant
councils known as the “P.A.LD. Library,” an in-
presidents to get a head start on council work to CWRU residents. Lastly, the role of the
depth explanation of topics related to CWRU
over the summer. Presidents would be able to Programming Committee and the responsibilities
RHA’s pillars of Programming, Advocacy and
assist with recruitment and council elections in the of the VP of Programming were revamped to
fall to attract more dedicated members. The first Leadership Development provide stronger resources and support to council
RHA Spring Elections for second-year and upper members through educational workshops and
class students took place in April 2011. hands-on involvement.

RHA Elections
RHA Elections are always a very exciting time of the year. There’s nothing quite like meeting a new student in
the fall who is interested in making a difference in the halls and sharing all the opportunities that RHA councils
will provide for them. Additionally, RHA Executive Elections is consistently a thrilling and thought-provoking event
as the leaders for the next RHA are determined. RHA elections procedures began to undergo some major changes
this year that will streamline the process and better enable councils to serve their communities.

Council Elections Executive Elections

Community council elections are held each fall within the first two weeks of Executive Board elections are administered every year near the end of
school. The RHA executive board recruits new members in the weeks February. The new Executive Board is elected in hierarchical order by the
preceding elections by assisting with first-year move-in, attending first year RHA General Body. In the two weeks preceding elections, any RHA member
community sessions, working with advisors and RA staffs, and talking with can be nominated for an Executive position. On the day of elections,
residents personally. We also create a campus-wide PR campaign to nominees are expected to provide a letter of intent, give a speech before
encourage residents to be a part of RHA. General Body, and answer any questions from GB members. After each
candidate has spoken, General Body members discuss the nominees at
Each candidate is asked to consider their leadership experience, why they
length before voting by secret ballot. The candidate with a majority of the
want to be on council, and what they can do for their community. Their
vote is elected to the position.
responses are displayed on the voting webpage for their community to
review. Candidates can also campaign using fliers, chalk, or Facebook. This exciting yearly event usually lasts a few hours and is taken extremely
After voting has ended, the council advisors tally the results and notify the seriously, specifically during question-and-answer and discussion sections. In
winners. Those who did not win their election are still strongly encouraged to the subsequent months, the new Executive Board is transitioned by the
become a part of their council in another capacity. current Executive Board, continuing a tradition of RHA passion and integrity.
Introducing Spring Elections Changing Executive Elections
Following the work of the Second Year Councils summer project, RHA began The Executive Elections Ad Hoc committee was formed in February 2011 to
exploring the possibility of moving second-year council elections to the address the issues with the current election process utilized by the General
spring. Shifting the elections timeline would create benefit RHA by: Body. The election process was originally designed to allow interested
residents to run for multiple executive board positions. This served the
• Strengthening member retention between first and second year organization well when member numbers were small and retention rates
• Facilitating a stronger transition of organizational memory were sub-par. Now that the organization has grown, the most recent
• Enabling councils to develop a dynamic and support structure executive board elections took seven hours, lasting until 3:30am. The
before the school year even begins committee explored a variety of alternatives and developed two ideas for
The RHA Executive Board opened up a discussion on spring elections with legislation to propose as solutions. The committee is currently writing two
the three second-year councils to get their opinions. After taking the concept resolutions to be presented to the 2011-2012 General Body:
back to their communities, each council created its own elections plan to suit 1. Hold executive elections in two GB meetings for two consecutive
its community. The outcomes varied: one council created new positions to be weeks with the six positions split between the two evenings.
elected in the spring, while another decided to only form an interest 2. Hold primaries the week before executive elections to ensure that
committee that could communicate over the summer. However, the proposed the candidates in the main elections are the front-runners
changes were intentional and fitted to the needs of each community, so the
Exec Board felt comfortable with them. Both pieces of legislation will include details about the type and length of
discussions, the ability of candidates to "trickle down" to later elections, and
In the Spring of 2011, RHA administered its first Spring Elections, which the required seating arrangement for representatives. All of these aspects
filled almost every available position and had several contested races. We will shorten the time of elections by making them more efficient and
look forward to developing our elections processes in future years. streamlined.
RHA Programming
RHA Programming has been revitalized to reflect our new mission of programming. Programming is done
by all levels of RHA, including the Executive Board, individual councils, and RHA as an association. RHA
has created a new way to evaluate and develop programs by encouraging the use of transitional
material to improve traditional events and aid in the creation of new ones. Our focus throughout the past
year has become more intentional and collaborative, with emphasis on the reasoning behind each event.

RHA Casino Night – Every year, Casino Night is one of RHA’s biggest and most successful programs. The event
takes place during Welcome Days at the beginning of the year. We had over 1,200 attendees and 50 volunteers
come out to the event. Traditionally, we have many poker tables, blackjack tables (both of which are run by volunteer
dealers), a traditional poker tournament and euchre tournament, and lots of food, beverages, and tons of prizes. This
year, RHA went above and beyond to include many new and unique activities, such as Bingo, Roulette tables, a Craps
table, and Mocktails. RHA further collaborated with other undergraduate student organizations to also include activities
such as Magic: The Gathering, Chess, and Board Games. In addition, RHA changed the nature of the prizes so that
instead of fun and expensive electronics, we gave away many prizes that would be useful for the residents during the
school year, ranging from coffee makers and irons to toilet paper and mini vacuum cleaners.

RHA Ice Cream Social – The Ice Cream Social is another traditional event held by RHA every year during
Welcome Days, where RHA serves 10 huge gallons of assorted ice cream flavors to over 400 residents the day before
classes start in the fall semester. This year, RHA had the special opportunity of hosting Ice Cream Social as the opening
event of the newly renovated “The Spot,” a popular campus location for many programs throughout the school year.
The program is also one of the most useful forms of recruitment and a great opportunity to introduce the Residence Hall
Association to new students.

Apples to Apples to Apples – This event replaced RHA’s traditional “S’mores Night” event in order to place
more of an emphasis on healthy living for the residents. The program took place towards the beginning of the school
year and was attended by more than 150 residents. It offered everything possible that was apple-themed, including
such "ap-peel-ing" activities as Apples to Apples (the game of hilarious comparisons), Pin the Stem on the Apple, and
an apple pie-eating contest. There were also tons of wonderful apple-based foods and beverages, from apple cider
to apple fritters to caramel apples that residents could customize with toppings of their choice. In addition to being an
apple fun fest, the program was a great first experience for the members of the Programming committee to learn the
basics of programming, such as how to make reservations at CWRU and how to advertise effectively.

Family Weekend Carnival – Family Weekend is a traditional university event that welcomes the families of
CWRU students to campus each fall. Coinciding with the weekend’s festivities, RHA’s Family Weekend Carnival offered
a host of family-friendly activities ranging from pie-throwing to “Duck Hunt” to caricatures. Each council was
responsible for its own activity, allowing councils to experiment and take charge of their programs under the guidance
of the RHA Executive Board. Additionally, RHA reached out to Greek organizations and invited their participation,
fostering collaboration between our organizations. Through this collaborative effort, major organizations and
departments on campus were able to learn about and value RHA’s contributions on campus.

RHA Programming (cont.)
RHAmen Rush – RHAmen Rush (pronounced “ramen”) introduced the campus to RHA’s new philanthropy,
Transitional Housing. This week-long food drive leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday encouraged friendly
competition between the residential communities and fostered drive and growth as individual councils. Members of
each council were asked to collect as many non-perishable food items as possible within their respective community.
The winning community received 300 dollars to improve their community in some way. RHAmen Rush brought
Transitional Housing 900 food items and a sense of great accomplishment to the RHA community.

Staff Appreciation Event – RHA and NRHH collaborated to plan this recognition event for custodial, maintenance
and support staff in the residence halls. These individuals do so much to improve our lives as students and residents,
and we wanted to show our gratitude. This social luncheon allowed staff members and RHA and NRHH members to
interact and talk about life in the halls. RHA also made a large banner and Thank-You cards for the staff.

Res Hall Rumble – Res Hall Rumble was a long-lost tradition that was revived for the first time in many years. It
had a carnival-styled theme, where residents participated in many different booths and activities ranging from mini-
bowling and mini-basketball to puzzle-making, and even a Wiki-racing and Sporcle-racing booth to bring out
CWRU’s true quirky nature (and which, ironically, were the most popular activities at the event!). At these booths,
participants won a pre-determined number of raffle tickets. These raffle tickets could be traded in for smaller prizes
at the prize station, or could also be submitted into a raffle for larger-scale prizes. Furthermore, the participants
noted their residential community on their raffle tickets, and the community with the most overall number of raffle
tickets won a pizza party for their residents. Thus, it was not only a fun and entertaining program for the individual
residents, but it was also a chance for whole communities to work together and bring out their competitive spirits.

Roommate Mixers – RHA annually hosts roommate mixers for residents who are seeking roommates for the
coming school year. The social mixers offer residents an alternative to going through the housing lottery alone and
being randomly placed. Multiple mixers are held to accommodate for both second-year and upperclassmen housing.
Following the mixers, participant contact information and housing policies are sent out to all attendees to assist them in
coordinating their living arrangements. Roommate mixers are always received extremely well by those in attendance
as well as Housing administrators.

The Amazing Race @ Case – The Amazing Race is a tradition that first started last year in 2009. Based on the
popular television show The Amazing Race, our Race sent participants across campus to follow clues and complete
challenges organized by the seven RHA councils. Most of these tasks related to the theme of the residential community
and some of the tasks even incorporated philanthropy, such as baking cakes that would later be sold at Relay for
Life. This year, RHA collaborated with two other large undergraduate organizations- Interfraternity
Congress/Panhellenic Council (the governing bodies of the Greek life chapters) and the University Program Board
(UPB). The Greek chapters also organized challenges along the race route, while UPB helped plan and run the
celebration party after the conclusion of the Race. This was one of the first programs that involved a joint
collaboration between three very prominent student organizations at CWRU, though the overall event was run,
delegated, and organized by RHA. The Race also further incorporated philanthropy by donating all money raised
from the participants to Relay for Life.

Council Programs – At a Glance
Council Programming 60 Programs
27 New Programs
13 Traditional Programs
Council programming is the most direct way that RHA councils connect with their residents. Through
providing fun, innovative events that cater to the unique personalities of their individual residential Number of Events that contained a…
communities, councils are able to interact with residents and bond with their fellow council Social Component: 43
members. RHA councils alone have put on dozens of programs this year. The following is a Educational Component: 11
Service Component: 16
selection of some of the events that our communities saw in the 2011-2012 school year.
Diversity Component: 4

Cedar Residential College Council (CRCC)

The Cedar council hosted a Halloween dance party put on in collaboration with the RA Staff. Council
members decorated the common room to look like a haunted underground dance club, complete with neon
* Cedarween
cobwebs, strobe lights and lots of delicious food. Residents came in costume and “monster-mashed” the night
away to the beats of resident/DJ Kira Swope. A costume contest rounded out the night’s festivities.
This was a week of programming about respecting the living space and facilities within Cedar, featuring fun
events like a laundry room cleanliness competition between the buildings and a kitchenette cleanliness
* “Your Mother
contest between floors. There were also events combining advocacy education with entertainment, such as a
Isn’t Here” Week
community baking and kitchen clean-up night and a night of skits about the importance of respecting
community rules and space.
Juniper Residential College Council (JRCC)
This was the sixth year of Juniper Star Search, an annual talent show that is widely anticipated across
campus. This year, the event featured over 20 fantastic acts and drew in 200 attendees. Star Search also
 Juniper Star
raised over $200 for the LGBT Center of Cleveland. The council used this event as a leadership
development tool - each council member was given specific area of the program to head up while learning
to coordinate and communicate with each other.
This spring, Juniper conducted an eight week long service competition within their residential college to get
residents excited about service. Each week different members of the council planned a opportunity for their
* Juni-Serves community to get service hours. Tallies and advertisements were kept visible in the lobby of every building.
The college competed by buildings, by floor, and as individuals. The competition started with a big blood
drive, and ended with a community celebration and announcement of the winners.
Mistletoe Residential College Council (MRCC)
After an incident involving the vandalism of an LGBT bulletin board, the community council had an event to
* Sands of
celebrate the community's diversity and bring awareness to the challenges of living with new and different
Diversity and Wear
people. The community also gave out purple wrist bands to support the LGBT community on the national
Purple Day
“Wear Purple Day".
The Mistletoe council developed a fun, social event geared towards leadership, teamwork and community
development. Mistletoe residents had to work together to build ginger bread replicas of different buildings
 Gingerbread on campus. Prizes were given to the top creations, but sweet sugary treats were enjoyed by all. The
House Build-Off program also had a philanthropic aspect, as all proceeds and donations went to benefit the CWRU Habitat
for Humanity student chapter. Mistletoe council collaborated with Habitat for Humanity in advance and even
had a Habitat representative give a presentation as part of the program.
Programs with a * indicate a new program. Programs with a  indicate a traditional program.
Clarke Tower Council
One of the longest running traditions on Case campus, Jack Bash is a widely known yearly Halloween event
where over 200 pumpkins are thrown off of the 11th floor window of Clarke Residential Tower. The council
 Jack Bash
provided markers to decorate pumpkins and placed decorations around the floor to create a Halloween
atmosphere. This high attendance event allowed students from all halls to have a blast splattering pumpkins.
In honor of Valentine’s Day and the onslaught of midterm exams, Clarke council threw this ironically named
* Debby Downer stress-relief event. Residents took a break from studying to vent about their lives and enjoy food and games.
Murray Hill Complex Council
This explosive event coupled CWRU residents’ interest in science with valuable information about fire safety. The
* Fun with Fire event was relevant to Case students and promoted the RHA Programming Vision. The council invited chemistry
professor Dr. Kenney to perform a variety of experiments for residents in the courtyard outside of the halls.
Murray Hill designed T-shirts for the residents to tie-dye on the first day back from spring break. It was a fun,
* Tie-Dye Night relaxed way to welcome students back from break and promote Murray Hill unity. Additionally, RHA members
were present to advocate for their community and answered residents’ questions concerning the halls.
Carlton Road Complex Council
Once a month, the Carlton council offers make-your-own ice cream sundaes to residents while giving residents a
* Sundaes on short survey to fill out about the council and the community. This recurring event was kept original by integrating
Sunday themes such as “Healthy Sundaes” and “St. Patty’s Sundaes.” The council used the results from the surveys to
advocate for their community and make decisions, such as whether to convert a game room into a study room.
The council spread empty sheets of muslin cloth all across the grass near the Carlton residence halls. They
provided tubes of acrylic paint, paintbrushes, and other unique tools, such as plastic spoons and wire coat
* Jackson Pollack
hangers, which over 50 residents used to splatter paint over the cloth in their own Jackson Pollack style. An
Splatter Art
additional 3 canvases were made by the members of Carlton Council to be displayed in the lounges of each
Carlton residence hall.
Upper Class Community Council (UCCC)
The Upper Class Community Council stages this traditional competition each year in the Village at 115. Over 80
 Poker participants tested their luck through hours of poker hands, dealt by RHA members. UCCC updated the program
Tournament with a Vegas theme and used a virtual bracket to keep track of the competition. The top players walked away
with fabulous prizes, including an iPad.
To meet the needs of many upperclassmen who are contemplating their post-college plans, UCCC worked in
* Get Your Act
conjunction with the CWRU Career Center to host this career-focused event. Staff from the Career Center shared
strategies for tracking down jobs and pursuing professional opportunities.
Programs with a * indicate a new program. Programs with a  indicate a traditional program.

Skyscraping Moment: Council Collaborations

RHA councils took their programming to new heights by working together to plan
collaborative programs. Mistletoe, Juniper and Cedar councils put on “Share the
Love” to bring together the three first-year communities. The event incorporated
each community’s theme through student performances, multicultural cuisine and
philanthropy activities to benefit the Cleveland Food Bank.
Murray Hill and Carlton Road councils also collaborated to plan “Variety Night,” a
campus-wide talent show. The event featured over 20 acts ranging from Irish
musicians to a martial artist and brought in over 200 residents.
RHA Advocacy Maintenance and Facilities
Maintenance of residential facilities is an integral part of RHA
The students on any campus deserve to play a key role in the policy, advocacy. By respecting community spaces and facilities, as well
procedure, and community discussions that surround their living spaces. RHA as custodial staff, students can create a strong community. RHA
is the student voice for all residents and seeks to improve the quality of communicates vital information on issues between administrators
and students, as well as works with Housing on new policies and
residential life. facility-development projects. This year, RHA helped to:
• Educate residents how to report maintenance issues
RHA works extensively with both residents and administrators, facilitating
• Secure free laundry machine usage for all residents
communication between them and representing the needs, wants and
• Inform and update students on significant facilities damage,
opinions of students living in the halls. Given the strength of including flooded residence halls
this connection, administrators often rely on RHA to disseminate
important information to residents regarding new policies, Safety & Security
procedures or initiatives that will affect them. In the past Living on an urban campus requires students to use their street
year, administrators asked RHA to help inform students about smarts. To ensure student awareness of smart safety practices
Room Selection and the Housing Lottery. RHA also works to and services, RHA maintains strong relations with Campus
Security and the Chief of Police. RHA’s continued communication
notify students of campus events about upcoming with security services improved student safety by:
community and university projects, ensuring that students
• Increasing the number of patrolling community officers
are aware of the changing dynamics of campus life.
• Establishing officer-lead group escorts between the library
and residence halls during finals week
Most advocacy projects are taken on by the Residential • Spreading awareness of bike lock and Safe-Ride programs
Relations committee. RHA members from each
community bring resident concerns to the committee, Information Technology (IT) Services
which then brainstorms and proposes solutions to these As a tech-obsessed campus, Case residents are heavily reliant on
problems. These issues and proposed solutions are quality tech services. RHA communicates with IT to ensure that
then brought to administrators by the VP of cable, internet access, community computers and printing services
are all functioning smoothly. RHA’s involvement encouraged IT to:
Residential Relations.
• Add a student printer to Leutner commons
• Update software on community computers
• Provide students with unlimited access to IT help services
Dining Services
RHA collaborates with Bon Appétit, CWRU’s food services
provider. Bon Appétit is very dedicated to working with RHA and
meeting resident needs. The VP of Residential Relations
organizes monthly “Food Committee” meetings, where RHA
representatives, students and Bon Appétit staff gather to discuss
areas for improvement in the dining halls. The committee has
produced the following changes:
• Extension of dining hall hours to adapt to students’ schedules
• Addition of more allergy-friendly options in dining halls
• Expansion of food selections at “Grab-It” cafés on the quad
When an issue is brought to RHA, it is approached with an atmosphere of tolerance, respect, and responsibility. Our main focus is to communicate with
all parties involved to make sure all possible ideas, concerns, and solutions are brought forward. RHA works very closely with Housing Administration,
Residence Life staff, and maintenance staff, as well as many other student groups and campus departments to resolve any conflicts that may arise.
RHA is known for our quick, thoughtful response to issues that need immediate attention.

Safety Issues Hate Speech Vandalism

Following a string of security At various points throughout the school year,
alerts around campus in the first instances of vandalism have occurred in the
few weeks of the spring residential communities. These acts have been
semester, CWRU President targeted at individuals in the community and are
Barbara Snyder reached out to considered hate speech, which is not tolerated at
Housing & Residence Life and CWRU. Residential coordinators have asked RHA
RHA to create a series of safety councils to take an active role in responding to
programs aimed at promoting vandalism incidents as the student representatives of
security services. Through their communities. Councils have responded to these
collaborating with Case Police acts through community-wide conversations and
Services and Residence Life staff, programs that embrace diversity and respect. The
RHA was able to host educational involvement of RHA councils in responding to Cedar Council organized a “Sands of Diversity” event in
safety events in every residential vandalism has enabled communities to heal faster response to an incident of vandalism in their community
community. and bond together over the circumstances.

Flooding in the Village Candlelight Vigil

When a water sprinkler pipe in House 6 of In October of 2010, the entire United States was
the Village at 115 ruptured in February of shocked by the number of young men who took their lives
2011, 500,000 gallons of water was sent due to intolerance and bullying because of their sexual
pouring into the building, damaging orientation. To show that the Case Western Reserve
common areas and apartments alike and University is a campus of inclusion, tolerance, support and
displacing 41 residents from their rooms awareness, RHA co-sponsored a candlelight vigil in
for an indefinite amount of time. With the conjunction with the new LGBT center and other campus
breaking of the news, VP of Residential organizations. This event involved reflection, poetry and
Relations Samantha Nardone immediately various speeches, including one given by RHA President
got in contact with Housing administrators Lillian Zamecnik. She appeared in the campus newspaper
to devise a plan to aid the affected residents. Samantha voluntarily went door to door to and on local news broadcasts for her words on the
speak with residents and keep them up to date on the developments of the situation. She also importance of the CWRU student community in creating a
arranged for pizza to be provided to the residents while they waited for further instruction supportive inclusive environment for all LGBT students.
from the administration. Samantha’s actions and warm presence alleviated student concerns in
spite of the situation. Her quick thinking and effective communication allowed for important "The hate, intolerance, and bullying that led to the tragic
information to get to residents quickly, actions that earned her a Regionally Winning OTM. deaths of these young men have no place at our university."
– Lillian Zamecnik, RHA President
Leadership Development
RHA offers first-year, second-year and upper class students the most student leadership opportunities of any organization at CWRU.
Given the multiple positions that students can hold in RHA, we focus on the leadership development of all RHA members to help them
become strong leaders for their communities, the campus, and their lives beyond Case Western.

Fall Council Training Winter Council Training

Following the success of our regional-SALT-winning fall training in 2009, we Within a few weeks of the start of the spring semester, RHA hosted a second
chose to keep a similar structure for 2010. Two areas we improved upon all-member training. Using feedback from the fall, we diverged from our
were creating training based on developmental experiences and facilitating usual training format and created a non-traditional training that was shorter,
council goal setting and problem-solving. Training started with an introduction featured physical, interactive events and emphasized RHA bonding. The
to RHA’s structure and goals and segued into more specialized sessions. theme of Winter Training was “Trust – Knowledge – Confidence.”

Activity Description Activity Description

Councils identified important values and created a name and Members attended two interactive team-building sessions that
Ideal Council Team
crest for a council to represent those values. Each council ranged from pool activities to ropes courses to climbing a rock
Session 1 Building
developed a program to satisfy both the ideals of their council. wall while blindfolded. Each activity was designed to
emphasize the theme of trust, knowledge and confidence.
Bonding for Councils competed to pull apart and put on a frozen t-shirt. The
Councils activity encouraged friendly competition and council teamwork. Councils broke into experiences to address problem areas
• First years reviewed their position descriptions and
Councils were faced with a challenge to their program from Experience developed action steps to better fulfill their duties
Ideal Council
Ideal Council Session 1 (i.e. losing room reservations) and had Breakout
Session 2
to overcome the problem as a team. Sessions • Second years discussed the possibility of spring elections
• Upperclassmen worked with the programming vision to
Members learned the expectations and responsibilities of their develop programming ideas for the semester
individual position from RHA Exec members and guest speakers
Session 1
who familiar with specific positions.
Members split into the first year, second year, and upper class
Training experiences and were trained to better understand their themes “RHA has taught me the value of how much you
Session 2 as outlined by the Department of Student Affairs. can accomplish by working together and has given
me the confidence to step up and take charge.”
Mock General General Body members participated in a mock meeting to - Kathleen Valdez, UCCC President
Body familiarize them with the rules and responsibilities of GB
“RHA has shaped me to be the person I am today. I was an
ineffective leader until I led my council and learned what it
took to be leader. RHA elevated me to new levels.”
- Sean Sukys, Murray Hill President

“Over the period of my involvement, I have watched a plethora of individuals

develop into fantastic leaders. Having the opportunity to watch all of these
people grow has made me reevaluate myself and helped me grow as well.”
- Ryan Stroud, Carlton Road Liaison to Murray Hill

Ongoing Development
As one of the pillars of RHA, leadership development expands beyond basic leadership skills. RHA council members receive numerous resources and opportunities to
hone their skills and develop new ones through committees, programs, and additional available opportunities. By extending developmental opportunities beyond
Fall Training, RHA has cemented its commitment to leadership development and has significantly grown as an organization.

Top Ten Core Competencies Leadership Development at Every Level

for RHA Members The Internal Development Committee orchestrates much of the leadership development RHA provides the community. ID
These ten skills were identified by Committee is responsible for recognizing outstanding members and providing ongoing leadership development
the RHA members as opportunities for both members and residents. The committee develops programs such as “How to Avoid Burnout” and
competencies that all members “How to Lead a Meeting.” Members are also responsible for developing 15-30 minute interactive sessions for the
should acquire through their General Body. These sessions have ranged from “Recognizing Members with Paper Plates” to “Council Accountability”.
experiences in the RHA. Our
leadership development efforts RHA utilizes one-on-one meetings as a tool to develop leaders in RHA. We have found that individual meetings foster
attempt to further member discussion and focus on personal leadership development opportunities. Executive Board members meet individually with
knowledge in these areas: both an advisor and the President every two weeks. Community Council Advisors are required to meet individually with
1. Accountability each member of their council at least once per semester. Finally, all council presidents are encouraged to have frequent
2. Delegation one on ones with the members or their councils.
3. Leading a Meeting The RHA Offices also enable RHA to assist with member development. Each Executive Board member holds two office
4. Setting Goals hours per week to allow members to come ask questions and receive feedback on their projects. The offices are also
5. Event Planning stocked leadership books and other resources.
6. Conflict Management
7. Positive Representation Executive members receive an intensive leadership development experience. In April, a history retreat is held for old
8. Professional Communication board members to teach important skills to the new board. Additionally, the Executive Board has two summer retreats
9. Recognition and a mid-semester retreat to recharge and redirect our efforts to advance the organization. The Executive Board
10. Intentionality of Actions leadership development experience is continued throughout the year mini-sessions during board meetings.

Council Resource Library

RHA is developing a large digital and hardcopy
library of resources for council and Executive
Board members. The library will be organized
according to our three pillars—programming,
advocacy, and leadership development. The
resource library includes information about past
programs, places to program, and past
leadership development sessions. Documents will
be added to the library and updated as
needed. It is our goal that these resources will
be used for training new members and will allow
council members to supplement their own
leadership development experience.
Weepul of the Week – Weepul of the Week was developed to recognize members who go above and beyond
their responsibilities during the week. The Weepul is the unofficial mascot of CWRU RHA and holds a special place
in our RHA culture. RHA members submit nominations via a weekly Google survey and the Internal Development
committee selects the winner, who is awarded a certificate and a Weepul at General Body.
General Body End-of-Semester Awards – At the end of each semester, the final General Body meeting
focuses on recognizing the representatives with awards and food. Exceptional members receive awards, both
funny and serious, and everyone enjoys the atmosphere of celebration. At the end of the school year, graduating
Executive Board members receive a lab coat and graduating General Body members receive a beanie hat in
recognition of their dedication to RHA. These items represent the spirit of our RHA and leave the members with a
tangible memory of RHA.
Council of the Year – Council of the Year (COTY) is awarded to the council who creates the most comprehensive
transferable form of organizational memory and successfully improves and supports the residential experience in
their community. COTY is our way to recognize and celebrate the councils for the work they have completed, ensure
the creation of a passable form of organizational memory for future councils. The winning COTY receives $750 for
community improvement and $250 for a council celebration.
End of the Year Recognition Event – RHA hosted an End of the Year celebration to recognize the hard work
and dedication of all RHA members and to announce the winning Council of the Year. All RHA members and many
university administrators were invited to enjoy a banquet dinner view each council’s COTY presentation. RHA
member also received an RHA Moleskine notebook to take home with them as a token of appreciation.

Executive Liaisons RA Liaisons
Skyscraping Moment:
Each executive board RA Liaisons serve as a
member is responsible Pre-Liaison Liaisons resource for councils and a
for acting as an Prior to the start of the 2010-2011 school year, link to the community's RA
Executive Liaison to a RHA made substantial efforts to improve staff. They facilitate
community council. They communication between RHA, Council Advisors and communication and
work with the council, RAs. As such, executive “pre-liaison liaisons,” or collaboration between the
advisor and RA liaisons “PLLs,” came into being. PLLs allowed RHA Exec to council and RAs, ensuring that
to ensure the council is be a resource to advisors and RAs throughout the entire community can
running smoothly. Exec August, before official Exec Liaison assignments reach its fullest potential.
members attend their were determined. Many RA liaisons are former
liaison council's weekly RHA members and are able
meetings, where they RHA coordinated a special training session for Council Advisors and their RA liaisons as part to act in an advisory capacity
observe the council in of RA Training. At this session, PLLs were able sit down with the council advisors and RAs to to the council, sharing their
action and act as a discuss elections, the structure of RHA and recruiting new members. PLLs were the first step own experiences for the
resource as necessary. towards creating a strong and gratifying collaborative relationship with Residence Life staff. council's benefit.

Community Service RHA Service – At a Glance
• 21 service-incorporating programs, 16 at
RHA is very dedicated to serving community, both within the council level
CWRU Residence Halls and the Cleveland area. Engaging • Partnership with CWRU Center for Civic
in service is very important to connecting with the community, Engagement and Learning to provide
as well as understanding leadership. RHA community abundant resources to RHA Service reps
councils strive to provide residents with opportunities for • RHA Service co-sponsorship budget
service within their residential communities. Additionally, the established to support events that foster a
External Communication committee works to coordinate sense of community through service
service events for all residential communities, as well as
service projects for RHA members that will benefit CWRU
residents and the Cleveland community. Transitional Housing, Inc. – CWRU RHA’s New Philanthropy
With the creation of the VP of External Communication position, RHA asserted the
importance of service to our organization. As a part of this commitment, RHA decided to
adopt a philanthropy: Transitional Housing, Incorporated.

Transitional Housing, Inc. is a Cleveland-based organization that

provides homeless women with a safe environment,
programs and services to promote self-sufficiency
and independence.

Transitional Housing shares several of CWRU RHA’s values. As residentially-oriented

organizations, both RHA and THI recognize the importance of a supportive and welcoming
community. THI also makes extensive use of RHA’s pillars of programming, advocacy and
leadership development. It offers specialized programs and classes to its residents on topics
such as positive living and life management. THI even has a Residents’ Council, where
Supporting Service Efforts on Campus women in the program area able to advocate for one another and help initiate changes.
RHA supports the community through co-sponsoring and
participating in a variety of campus philanthropy and service In the fall of 2010, RHA’s hall-wide “RHAmen
events, including: Rush” food drive raised over 900 food items
for THI residents.
• Relay for Life • Let’s Shack Up
In the spring of 2011, RHA organized two
• Walk in Her Shoes • Resonance Blood Drive large volunteer trips at THI where students
• ΔΓ Anchor Splash • Case for Community Day helped to renovate their facilities and were
• Sigma Psi Mr. CWRU • Dance Marathon able to learn about THI residents’ experiences.
Many of the councils decided to donate money
• KATwalk • Alternative Spring Break raised from council fundraising events and take
• AXΩ Dodgeball • Bone Marrow Drive additional trips to THI.
• Sig Ep Flag Football • Saturday of Service

CWRU RHA has fostered strong relationships between our organization and various campus groups and administrators. RHA often works in
conjunction with these groups to benefit both the residential and campus communities. By actively collaborating and communicating with
other organizations and offices on campus, RHA has become one of the most respected organizations at CWRU and has created a strong
network of resources to improve the work we do.

In the Halls Outside the Halls

Office of Housing, Residence Life & Greek Life Undergraduate Student Government (USG)
RHA regularly communicates and USG and RHA have worked together to tackle student concerns in the
works with Housing and Residence residential communities including student meal swipes, the initiative for
Life administrators to improve the free laundry, and campus security. RHA’s VP of Residential Relations
CWRU residential community. and USG’s Vice President of Campus Life meet regularly throughout
RHA distributes newsletters, the school year to discuss current initiatives, and foster open
invites administrators to General communication between the organizations. In addition to these
Body meetings, and has regular meetings, RHA and USG have pledged to co-create a joint resolution
meetings with the administration. every semester.
The Vice President of Residential Interfraternity Congress and Panhellenic Council
Relations meets weekly with the (IFC and Panhel)
Director of Housing to discuss
advocacy issues and monthly with RHA has taken progressive strides to improve relations with the
the campus dining provider to improve conditions in the dining halls. The RHA umbrella organizations for Greek chapters on campus. RHA, IFC and
President also meets with the RHA advisors twice per week which allows a Panhel co-programmed the Family Weekend Carnival to promote our
continuous flow of communication between the housing staff and RHA. organizations to students’ families. We also worked together on The
Amazing Race @ Case to enhance the race route with a wider variety
RHA also works extensively with RAs and Residential Coordinators to address of challenges. RHA met with representatives from IFC and Panhel to
the needs of the residents. Councils frequently collaborate with RAs on identify areas for future collaboration between the organizations.
programs and invite staff members to facilitate leadership development within RHA took away valuable ideas to improve service efforts and
the council. recognition.
Other Hall Groups University Program Board (UPB)
There are other student groups and programs in the halls that RHA councils RHA and UPB joined together this spring to co-program The Amazing
collaborate with, including: Race @ Case along with IFC and Panhel. This cross-organizational,
large-scale collaboration was the first of its kind at CWRU. UPB has
• Cedar Arts Board, which provides arts-based programming in Cedar expressed interest in future collaborations with RHA.
• Juniper Diversity Squad, which focuses on promoting diversity in Juniper
• Mistletoe Alumni Board, a network for Mistletoe alumni who made Other University Offices
significant contributions to Mistletoe in their freshman year RHA has collaborated with many other university offices and
• Faculty-in-Residence Program, which allows 3-4 faculty members to live in departments, including:
the halls and interact with residents on a regular basis Center for Civic Engagement and Learning, Career Center, LGBT
• RA Council, which enables communication between RAs in each community Center, Flora Stone Mather Center for Women, Student Activities
and the Director of Residence Life & Leadership, Office of the President
Campus Involvement Student Executive Council
One major committee that RHA serves on is the Student Executive
Council (SEC). The SEC is comprised of representatives from the seven
RHA’s external involvement in other sectors of the university allows us to better serve major student organizations at CWRU. The group meets four times a
our residential communities. RHA plays a pivotal role in university affairs by sitting on semester to discuss campus wide issues and promote communication
various committees, helping to raise student awareness of issues and providing a between organizations. RHA President Lillian Zamecnik serves as RHA’s
student voice in the development of the vision for the future of CWRU community. representative and chaired the council this past fall. During this time,
the RHA President and VP External Communication hosted a SEC mixer,
Contributing to Campus Development and Student Life in which all SEC organization executive boards participated.
Case Western Reserve University is in the midst of some monumental changes to From facilitating a referendum that affected student group funding
campus life. In the past year, the university announced plans to build a new allocations to enacting changes to the campus posting policy, the
student center and athletic field house and purchased a new performance actions of the SEC have a huge
facility. Additionally, the University Circle area is undergoing major changes in influence on campus life. As a
the form of the Uptown Project, which is creating new apartments, shopping member of the SEC, RHA plays
centers, and restaurants only a five minute walk from the halls. a major role in communicating
important information to
With each new progressive action of the university, CWRU administrators turn to residents, both through
RHA as a voice of the students. RHA has had the privilege of sitting on university representation at SEC open
developmental committees, including the Architect Selection Committee for the forums and promoting
student center and the Committee on Master Plan and Student Space. awareness in RHA members
RHA is entirely committed to improving the student experience on campus. Our who inform their own
involvement in several university-organized committees allows RHA to make a communities.
tremendous impact on student life at CWRU. Our members have contributed to
the following projects and committees in the past year:
Little Blue Book Committee, Center for Civic Engagement and Learning
Advisory Board, Student Life Committee, Sexual Harassment
Conduct Board, Emerging Leaders Program, Student
Conduct Hearing Board

Campus Traditions
Like any campus, Case Western has a variety of traditional social events that
bring out the campus community. RHA is consistently involved in these yearly
programs through serving on event committees and promoting the programs in the
halls. RHA councils also frequently participate in these events. In the 2010-2011
school year, RHA was involved in:
• Orientation • Kuumbafest
• Welcome Days • Thwing Study Over
• Homecoming • Pizza Olympics
• Halloween @ Home • Relay for Life
• Family Weekend • Spring Fest RHA Councils showing their CWRU spirit at the 2010 Homecoming Parade

Within the past school year, RHA and Case Western Reserve University have taken enormous strides towards a greener
campus and a greener residential experience. The Village at 115, the primary apartment complex for upper class
students, was recently awarded a Gold and Silver ratings for the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design
(LEED) certification. Solar compactor receptacles have been installed across campus and a wind turbine was
constructed on the Quad this fall.
RHA followed suit with similar sustainable initiatives that have impacted the residents. Council sustainability
representatives are responsible for coordinating sustainable programs for their communities, including a Beef-Free week
in Murray Hill community. The sustainability reps meet every few weeks in the newly formed RHA Sustainability
Committee to develop and act upon RHA-wide sustainability initiatives, such as creating tactile recycling posters,
coordinating a hall-wide recycling walk through with administrators, and greening RHA’s internal operations.
Furthermore, CWRU participated in the nationwide “Recyclemania” competition among colleges and universities promoting waste reduction and increased
recycling. RHA collaborated with the Student Sustainability Council and took an active role in encouraging residents to recycle in the halls through community-
wide friendly contests and substantial PR. RHA also worked with the Office of Housing, Residence Life & Greek Life (HRLGL) to sponsor “REScycle,” a new
program held at the end of the school year that allowed residents to donate unwanted items upon their departure from the university.

RHA co-sponsors several events every year at CWRU. RHA co-sponsorship is a great way for campus organizations, clubs, and offices to receive
monetary and non-monetary support for programs that impact CWRU residents. Co-sponsorships also grant organizations special privileges for
advertising in the residence halls. Additionally, co-sponsorships promote RHA to the campus by associating our organization with major events and
initiatives. Over $6,500 in co-sponsorships was given this school year.

Fall 2010 Semester Spring 2011 Semester

Date Event Title Amount Date Event Title Amount
9/11/10 Delta Gamma: Anchor Splash $200 1/24/11 LGBT Center: Allies in Faith $200
9/13/10 Fall Leadership Conference $250 1/24/11 Be the Match Bone Marrow Drive $500
9/13/10 Habitat for Humanity: Let's Shack Up $260 1/31/11 HCSL Resonance Blood Drive $100
9/20/10 CWRU Farm Harvest Festival $400 2/07/11 Women’s Center: A League of Her Own $400
9/27/10 Kappa Alpha Theta: KATwalk $200 2/14/11 Ivri Lider in Concert $200
9/27/10 Women’s Center: Hunk, Hustler, Hard-Ass $200 2/14/11 Relay for Life $420
10/04/10 GMI: Global Health Benefit Dinner $100 2/28/11 Immigration Speaking Tour $200
10/04/10 Phi Kappa Psi: 24-Hour Softball Tourney $200 3/14/11 Delta Chi: Jimmy V. Joust $200
10/11/10 Alpha Chi Omega: Purple Day $95 3/14/11 Mortar Board: Rock for Doc $200
10/11/10 Humans Vs. Zombies $100 3/21/11 Voices of Glory Spring Benefit Concert $200
10/25/10 Clarke RHA: Jack Bash $150 3/21/11 Humans Vs. Zombies $50
11/01/10 Newman Catholic: Sex and the Soul manpower 3/28/11 Walk Against Hunger $191
11/01/10 Phi Delta Epsilon: CMN Benefit Dinner $200 3/28/11 Japan Relief Benefit Dinner $200
11/08/10 African American Society: Ebony Ball $100 4/04/11 Math Gala $200
11/08/10 Delta Upsilon: Philanthropic Rave $100 4/04/11 Diversity & Inclusion: Slumdog Millionaire $150
11/22/10 Math Gala $200 - - -
11/22/10 Mistletoe RHA: Gingerbread Build Off $170 - - -
Budget and Fundraising
RHA Organization Budget, 2010-2011
Executive Board Retreats $2,500.00
Co-Sponsorships $6,000.00
Family Weekend $250.00 Funding for RHA is given by the Case Western Office of Council Allocations, 2010-2011
Welcome Days $2,500.00 Housing & Residence Life. After the residents take the Cedar $3,190.00
Office $700.00 bi-annual census, RHA receives funding for each council Juniper $3,340.00
COTY (Council Of The Year) $1,100.00 based on the amount of residents in their respective Mistletoe $3,660.00
E-board Discretionary $200.00 community. The VP of Administration and RHA advisors
Casino Night $5,150.00 Carlton $3,750.00
Programming allocate the remaining amount to create a new budget
TBA Program $2,000.00 Clarke $2,090.00
for the school year, using past budgets and input from Murray Hill $3,430.00
Amazing Race $3,000.00 executive members to break it down per position.
General Programming $1,300.00 UCCC $8,350.00
VP Programming Discretionary $25.00 CWRU RHA is fortunate enough to have one of the TOTAL $27,810.00
Residential Advocacy Advertising $100.00 larger budgets on campus. As a result, we have gone
Relations Open Forums $100.00 through great lengths to plan and apportion accordingly to get the most out of each cent.
Food Meetings $0.00 During retreats, the Executive Board brainstorms ideas for funding without any limitations.
Roommate Mixer $120.00 These ideas are then assessed by the President and VP of Administration to see if the budget
VP Residential Relations Discretionary $25.00 can accommodate the spending. Through this optimistic visioning and careful consideration,
Internal Apparel $1,200.00 RHA has been able to purchase such beneficial items as a projector and quality poker chips
Development Council Training $3,000.00 for Casino Night. It has also enabled RHA to plan a remodel for our Southside office.
Leadership Training $200.00
Advertising $200.00 All budget items excluding “Executive Board,” “President,” and “Advisor” budgets are
General Body Recognition $600.00 intended to directly benefit Case students. For example, “Programming” allocations allow RHA
Council Recognition $2,500.00 to provide quality programs for students, while “Internal Development” allocations help RHA to
VP Internal Development Discretionary $25.00 cultivate leaders, who in turn serve their communities. This results in improved programs, living
External CAACURH (6 student delegates) $4,000.00 atmosphere and awareness within the residential communities. Essentially, the vast majority of
Communication NO Frills (3 student delegates) $800.00 RHA funds trickle down to the benefit of the students.
NACURH (3 student delegates) $3,000.00
Community Service $1,500.00 Fundraising
Collaboration and Correspondence $1,000.00 Fundraising provides income that allows RHA operations to run smoothly and provide more
External Communication Discretionary $25.00 opportunities for our members and residents.
Administration From-Mom Care Packaging $1,000.00
VP Administration Discretionary $25.00 RHA has partnered with From-Mom, an independent care package service, to provide care
Executive Board Recognition $150.00
package options to the families of CWRU residents. From-Mom specializes in alternative
Presidential Recognition $80.00
packages including gluten free and holiday specials. Each package sold through Case
SEC (Student Executive Council) $150.00
Western results in a partial earning for RHA. In recent years, RHA has
President Discretionary $25.00
heavily promoted this care packaging system to parents
during freshman orientation and has sent mail-outs to
Advisor Advisor Discretionary $500.00
the parents of upperclassmen. This summer, a
Miscellaneous NRHH $2,000.00
pre-semester raffle was held to promote
Care Packages Fall $0.00
From-Mom care packages.
Care Packages Spring $0.00
Contingency $0.00
RHA also works with CAACURH-endorsed On Campus Marketing to sell linens to
Carryover Items (Previous Fiscal Year) $9,668.69
residents at the beginning of each school year. RHA receives a cut of
TOTAL $56,718.69 the profit from each bundle of linens sold to students.

National Residence Hall
The purpose of the Donald J. Kamalsky Chapter of NRHH is to provide recognition
for those students living in the residence halls who have shown outstanding service
and who have provided important leadership in the residence halls. NRHH collects
nominations and applications during the fall semester and every active member
participates in member selection. Induction is held once per year. On February 2,
2011, the Chapter inducted 6 new active members and 2 honorary members. The
NRHH currently has 12 active members, 4 alumni members and 12 honorary
members on campus.

Structure Recognition
The NRHH has an Executive Board composed of three positions:
NRHH believes that recognition is important in developing a strong sense of community.
President – Presides over all official meetings; As a result, NRHH ensures that deserving students, staff, faculty, and others receive
appoints ad hoc committees; submits an end recognition for their efforts.
of the year progress report to the National
Honorary Office; renews the chapter’s NRHH recognition focuses on three areas. The first is by extending membership to the
membership as a registered campus top 1% of students who make an impact in their communities. Second, OTMs are given
organization with the National Honorary to commend Case leaders and outstanding campus programs that improve our
Office; and represents the Chapter at all residence hall communities. Thirdly, the Donald J. Kamalsky chapter puts on three
National Honorary business meetings and programs per year to recognize the staff members who make a difference in the
events residence halls and the efforts of individuals who write OTM submissions.
Vice President – Advises the OTM Recognition The Housekeeping Appreciation Breakfast recognizes the housekeeping staff with a
committee; presides over meetings in absence catered breakfast and cards from the residents in their areas.
of the President; and manages all OTM The staff thoroughly enjoys the break from their busy
voting submissions schedules and the genuine gratitude of the students.
Administrator – Takes minutes at called
meetings and distributes minutes to all In the late spring, NRHH collaborates with the
members; formulates a budget at the Housing & Residence Life Office to recognize the
beginning of the year with the President; student staff members in the department through
advises any bid creating committee; a reception at the CWRU President’s House. The
maintains the NRHH website; provides an event is always a huge talking point amongst students
itemized account of all transactions; and and a great way for them to round out the year.
submits the books for review to the advisor at NRHH’s final event of the year is the OTM Re-Recognition
the end of the year. Event where all individuals who either wrote an OTM or
were awarded an OTM during the year are recognized for
The Chapter also has three committees—OTM Recognition, their dedication and achievements.
Housekeeping Appreciation, and Residence Life Staff
Appreciation. These committees plan the chapter’s traditional
events during the year.
Of the Month Awards
Of the Month awards are a very important part in recognition for any school, but at Case, we use OTMs to showcase the wonderful
people and programs on campus. We encourage all community councils to write OTMs to spread awareness of the hard work that is
being done around campus, and the teamwork that goes into every event. In the 2010-2011 school year, RHA and NRHH members
submitted 32 OTM Nominations, with 13 winning at a campus level and 3 winning regionally.

Name of Nominee/Program Month/Year Category Award Level

Senior Week May 2010 Social Program Campus Winner
Lillian Zamecnik May 2010 Executive Board Member Regional Winner
Floor Decorating Contest Sept. 2010 Social Program Campus Winner
Sindhu Arivoli Sept. 2010 Student Regional Winner
Eric Silverman Sept. 2010 First Year Student Campus Winner
Rachel Tuttle Oct. 2010 Advisor Campus Winner
Jack Bash Oct. 2010 Social Program Campus Winner
Corin Bowen Oct. 2010 Resident Assistant Campus Winner
Juniper Star Search Nov. 2010 Social Program Campus Winner
Nicole Wojnarwsky Nov. 2010 Advisor Campus Winner
Project Linus Dec. 2010 Community Service Program Campus Winner
Share the Love Feb. 2011 Social Program Campus Winner
Christina Gilmore, Jacob Snyder,
Feb. 2011 Organization Campus Winner
and Ryan Stroud
Samantha Nardone Feb. 2011 Executive Board Member Regional Winner
Ryan Stroud March 2011 Student Campus Winner
Juni-Serves March 2011 Community Service Program Campus Winner

Ensuring Quality OTM Submissions

CWRU RHA and NRHH collaborate to promote high-quality Of the Month submissions from RHA, NRHH and
other members of the CWRU residential community. A member of NRHH presents to RHA General Body at
the beginning of the school year to explain why OTMs are important to CWRU and to demonstrate how to
write a strong nomination. RHA members were taught valuable OTM writing skills, such as the importance
of providing specific details about the nominee’s contributions during the past month. Additionally, we
encourage OTMs that are personal to the writer and convey how the actions of the nominee have truly
impacted both the campus community and the nominator. Finally, RHA considers the quality of a council’s
Regional OTM Winning Executive Board
OTM submissions as part of the criteria for the Council of the Year award.
Members Lillian Zamecnik (May) and
Samantha Nardone (Feb.)
Regional Involvement
Case Western is proud to be an affiliated member school in the CAACURH region.
CWRU RHA highly values our interaction with other schools as an opportunity to learn
and grow as an organization. As such, we have taken several steps to become more
involved in regional affairs and strengthen our connection to CAACURH in the past
year. It is our goal to continue building upon our involvement and to expose even
more of our members to the excellent opportunities available through CAACURH in
the coming year.

No Frills 2011 CWRU RHA is always stoked to pull out the lab coats and beanies and show our Cougar
CWRU was represented by the RHA President, NCC and RHA pride at the annual CAACURH conference. This year’s CAACURH Cultural Carnival was no
advisor at the 2011 regional business meeting. At the closing exception. We set many personal records for CWRU, including most applications, most
ceremonies, NCC Kaitlyn Estes was awarded a Cougar Pride Pin delegates presenting programs, and some of the best spirit projects CWRU has ever had.
by RCC Steven Le for her work in preparing CWRU’s SOY bid. The Delegation – The CWRU delegation consisted of the RHA President, the NRHH President,
the CWRU NCC, 2 advisors, and 4 delegates from various community councils.
Regional Committee Involvement
Pre-Conference – In the weeks before the conference, the delegation worked hard to
CAACURH Programming Grant Committee – Stephanie Chung prepare, meeting weekly to create a fantastic
Newly-formed committee that reviews programming grant roll call video, banner and display. We also
requests and allocates funding to CAACURH member schools involved our entire General Body in the
CAACURH OTM Voting Committee – Kaitlyn Estes philanthropy card-making project. Each delegate
Standing committee that awards Regional OTMs was responsible for at least one of these projects
and/or presenting a program. Finally, the
Bidding delegation had a “Spirit-Up Slumber Party” where
CWRU regularly submits school-category bids to the region, we reviewed travel plans, played board games
including our winning SALT bid in 2009 and RHA Building Block and decorated T-shirts to wear at opening
bids in 2009 and 2010. We hope to bid for POY in the fall. ceremonies the night before leaving for Maryland.
At the Conference – The delegation
Regional Communication had a blast at CAACURH! Through Programs Presented at CAACURH 2010
CWRU regularly participates in NCC and Presidents’ chats to attending and presenting programs, • “Crafts & Community” – Community
contribute to regional affairs. Beyond chats, we have reached passing out swag, bonding with other Development program about using arts and
out to regional schools to get to know each other better, as well schools and actively participating in crafts to build community
as requested advice on issues pertaining to CWRU RHA. Schools boardroom, delegates left • “Putting on Your Game Face” – Leadership
have asked for our input on their organizations as well. Finally, CAACURH with new Development program about positively
CWRU has communicated with CAACURH RCC Steven Le about skills and new representing your organization
pursuing legislation to alter the regional No Frills bidding time- passion for • “School’s out for Summer…Kinda” –
period. The proposal would make it such that bids could only CAACURH President’s Track program about utilizing
include content that took place between NACURH and No Frills and RHA. summer projects to advance your organization
and would prevent massive bid revisions between conferences.

National Involvement
CWRU is nationally affiliated (with dues paid) and actively participates in NACURH through our recognition efforts, NIC
and bid submissions, involvement in national projects and NRHH chapter. We have sought to expand our involvement in
NACURH initiatives throughout this year and have taken steps to educate CWRU RHA and NRHH members about the
organization’s opportunities and structure. We look forward to continuing this expansion in the coming school year.

NIC Reports and Bidding Recognition National Residence Hall Month

CWRU has made extensive use of the RFI guide CWRU utilizes the NACURH Services and Recognition This April, RHA and NRHH teamed up to support
on the NACURH website to draft quality NIC Office to recognize outstanding individuals that National Residence Hall month through a variety
reports. This year, RHA submitted an NIC report have positively impacted our organization and of relevant programs:
detailing how the Executive Board operates in the supported the RHA and NRHH presidents during • Spring into Service – RHA & NRHH worked
summer and completes summer projects to bring their terms by awarding them bronze pins. together to sponsor a campus blood drive
about change in our organization. • Advocacy Week – RHA promoted Low-Carbon
RHA and NRHH also submit OTMs to recognize
CWRU RHA has also utilized the RFI to assist our extraordinary contributions around campus. CWRU Diet Day in campus dining halls
efforts in the bidding process. We enjoy bidding has consistently been awarded about 1-2 National • Recognition Week – NRHH had its annual
because it allows us to reflect on our progress as OTMs per year, which we always consider to be a “Re-Recognition” event for OTM writers and
an organization and develop organizational huge honor. Our last nationally-winning submission winners while RHA hosted its GB Awards
memory. Last year, CWRU submitted our was written in recognition of Cedar Residential • Programming Week – RHA councils organized
regionally-winning SALT bid to NACURH 2010. Community in January 2010. end of the year community celebrations

National Conferences Contributions to National Policy

CWRU RHA has been unable to attend NACURH CWRU RHA played an integral role in proposing changes to the judging criteria for the School of the Year
for the past two years due to financial reasons. award. After noticing a discrepancy in which national-related criteria fell under the “Regional Involvement”
The conferences were held a great distance from section, CWRU communicated with the CAACURH RBD to propose a change to the national policy book
Cleveland and our organization voted to utilize through the National Corporate Structure committee.
our funding in efforts that more directly affected
our residents at CWRU. Though we could not
attend, we communicated with the NBD to ensure
that we were up to date on national business. Final Thoughts…
As such, we are absolutely thrilled to attend
Camp NACURH at Western Illinois University. Our The efforts of CWRU RHA members during the 2010-2011 school year have shown inspirational
delegation will consist of the RHA President, NCC, commitment to the mission, vision, and goals of RHA. Our many accomplishments would not have
NCC-IT, an NRHH Rep, 2 advisors and 4 other been possible without our members’ drive for success and focus on excellence. It is our greatest
delegates. Five members of our delegation are hope that RHA’s dedication to the residents, determination to improve the residential experience,
first-time conference goers. We have started
and passion for building community is evident in our bid and worthy of the title School of the Year.
making preparations by organizing numerous
program submissions and earning spirit points by
With Cougar Pride,
posting on the Camp NACURH Facebook page.
Case Western Reserve University Residence Hall Association

Housing, Residence Life & Greek Life
10900 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44106-7061
phone 216.368.3780
fax 216.368.6658

April 11, 2011

Dear NACURH Board of Directors:

It is with great pride that we submit this letter of support of Case Western Reserve University’s (CWRU) Residence Hall Association
(RHA) 2011 School of the Year Bid. We are incredibly impressed with the time, energy, and passion that the executive board has
placed in their bid, but also in the way they approach their roles within RHA and the university community. The imagery created by
the bid’s theme speaks strongly of the resilience, innovation, and strength of CWRU’s RHA.

In August, the busiest month for the executive board members of RHA, one of the board members had to make the difficult decision
of stepping down from her leadership position; not due to disinterest or lack of passion for the organization, but due to changes in
her personal life that required her to reprioritize her time for the upcoming academic year. Such a dramatic change can often break
an organization, but not this executive board. The board provided support to the outgoing member, had productive conversations
about the future of the vacant position, and quickly identified and appointed a new qualified executive board member. The new
individual quickly learned as RHA programmed for the new school year and recruited members for the new residential community
councils. While the previous member is dearly missed, the newest executive board member provided the team with a new level of
confidence, and has proved to be a diligent, highly intelligent, and strong member of the team.

Case’s RHA protects, honors, and supports their traditions of programs such as Casino Night and roommate mixers, but is also not
afraid to ask questions and make improvements when needed. It never fails to surprise us that they never forget to ask the
questions “what do the residents need?” and “how can we better provide programming, advocacy, and leadership development to
our residents?” This year, the executive board created a Needs Assessment; an assessment provided to the general body to assess
the needs of not only the RHA members but also the residents as a whole. Currently, two assessments have been administered this
year and there are discussions from the board to work with Institutional Research to best utilize this information. In the spring
semester, RHA took Case’s campus by storm by presenting the second installment of the large-scale program “The Amazing Race @
Case.” The program generated a lot of conversations, participation and has established a strong foundation to become an RHA
tradition. Lastly, the executive board collaborated with the general body and council members to begin strengthening the second-
year councils by creating a recruitment and election plan for the spring semester. This new initiative will allow for second year
councils to be up-and-running as soon as residents return for the fall semester as well as provide a plan to keep strong leaders
involved in RHA.

When a student was speaking in front of the general body in order to acquire a member-at-large position stated that he wanted to
take on this role because “RHA is just an organization that you want to be a part of” it demonstrated the strength and positive
reputation of RHA on Case’s campus. The current RHA president, Lillian Zamecnik was selected as the chair of Case’s Student
Executive Council (SEC); a board the represents the large organizations on Case’s campus. She was elected because of her strong
leadership and RHA’s strength in their management of their own organization. Also, as advisors, the executive board members
never fail to amaze us with the way they approach their organization. The executive board truly takes ownership of their work,
keeps to their deadlines, and is constantly looking for ways to support each other and the residents. The executive board runs their
organization, not us, the advisors, which is something that is always expected but rarely achieved from student organizations.

It is an exciting time to be a part of the Residence Hall Association at Case Western Reserve University. We are extremely proud of
the work that our executive board and general body do for the residents of CWRU. We strongly support Case’s School of the Year
bid and thank you for your time and consideration when making your decision.


Stephen (Skip) Begley Rachel Tuttle

Manager of Community Development & RHA Advisor Coordinator of First Year Residence Education & RHA Advisor

Housing, Residence Life & Greek Life
10900 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44106-7061
phone 216.368.3780
fax 216.368.6658
April 5, 2011

NACURH National Awards

RHA School of the Year Nomination

Dear NACURH Board of Directors:

It is with much respect and excitement that I nominate the Case Western Reserve University
Residence Hall Association (RHA) chapter for the NACURH School of the Year Award. I believe
that this award epitomizes how the CWRU RHA chapter has not only raised, but also maintains,
the bar of excellence with their creative, dynamic and educational learning and leadership
opportunities to improve the residential community on campus. As the Director of Housing, I
have been able to witness first-hand the continued growth of the organization and have been
fortunate to have been included in some of their efforts.

The CWRU RHA chapter has been intentionally working to improve their work on behalf of the
residential students. This has been realized in much collaboration with university departments
and student groups that has ultimately provided more services for students. Some examples
• improved training for Council Advisors;
• participating in student focus groups in the renovation of a campus dining facility;
• incorporating the CWRU Undergraduate Experience model into all training initiatives;
• participating in professional staff selection processes within the division of Student Affairs;
• serving in an advocacy role during some campus hate crime incidents; and,
• providing strong direction in communicating safety resources after two campus assaults
took place within close proximity to the residential area.

All of this could not have been achieved without the dedicated leaders that serve the association.
The dynamic executive board group leads with a “can-do” attitude, and they in-turn share this
energy with the student leaders to continue the legacy of strong leadership and advocacy. Their
energy and dedication to making RHA more of a voice on campus has resulted in RHA being
consulted more on larger university initiatives.

I whole-heartedly recommend the CWRU RHA chapter for the NACURH School of the Year
Award. They are a highly-motivated group of individuals that have made decisions in the best
interest of CWRU students at every turn and we have a better residential program because of
their work. It is my hope that this information along with their bid packet gives you ample
examples of their value to the CWRU community and to our department. My best to you as you
make your decision.


Alma R. Sealine
Director of Housing

Office of Student Affairs
10900 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44106-7060

phone 216.368.2020
fax 216.368.6957

April 12, 2011

Dear NACURH Board Members:

It is my sincere pleasure to write a letter of support for the Case Western Reserve University Residence Hall Association’s
bid for the School of the Year.
In my numerous roles at Case Western Reserve University within Housing, Residence Life, and Student Affairs it has been
both impressive and rewarding to observe and support the students in their effort to create a Residence Hall Association
(RHA) that is perceived on-campus as one of the essential entities to advocate for, and represent undergraduate students.
Although the chief focus for the RHA is to represent the views of the approximately 70% of students who live in residence
halls, I have observed an intentional and thoughtful shift in the past five years by the leadership of the RHA to be more
knowledgeable about the goals of the university, campus-wide issues, and the value that living in the residence halls has on
the overall educational experience of students. The awareness and interest of RHA to support the overall mission of the
has assisted the RHA Executive Board in developing goals that not only enhance the student residence hall experience, but
contributes to a seamless learning environment, an environment which challenges students to make connections between
classroom learning and learning outside the classroom.
In my current role as the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, I have come to depend on the RHA to not only
represent the views of residence hall students but to partner with Undergraduate Student Government (USG), the Media
Board, Greek Life, Campus Police and Security, Dining Services and a myriad of university-wide committees to provide
guidance and support to enhance the student experience at Case Western Reserve University.
In the last year, the RHA has made a concerted effort to present a collaborative, professional, and sophisticated image that
has served to be the catalyst for collaboration between constituent groups. One such example is the collaboration that
RHA initiated with USG and the University Office of Facilities in developing a dining commons renovation program plan that
not only enhanced the dining function of the commons but also provided students with essential, sustainable, flexible
programming and study space. The newly renovated dining commons now reflects the traditions and current-day priorities
of the Case Western Reserve University residential experience.
Case Western Reserve University is committed to and values the residential experience and enjoys the fact that the vast
majority of our undergraduate population chooses to live on campus throughout their undergraduate years. Guiding our
undergraduate residential program is the “Case Western Reserve University Undergraduate Experience Model” which was
created and implemented at CWRU in 2003. This year RHA embraced and utilized this unique developmental cohort
approach in their member training program to better understand the needs of first, second and upperclass students to
provide more purposeful programming and effective representation for the residential communities. Because of their
intentional and holistic understanding of the undergraduate residential population, RHA has been instrumental in
representing the student voice in the planning of the Tinkham Veale University Center Project, one of the University’s most
important initiatives which will open in 2014.
As I reflect back to 1992, when RHA first established itself at Case Western Reserve, I remember an organization focused on
facilities, parties, and governance. Although these were appropriate and understandable foci for the time, they are
certainly not reflective of the RHA of today. Today, RHA is all about campus partnerships and collaboration, in the context
of providing residential students with outstanding programming, advocacy, and leadership development. These themes not
only support our vision of a Case Western Reserve University graduate as a lifelong scholar, active global citizen, and ethical
leader, but translate into experiential opportunities for students within the residence halls to realize and reflect these
The Case Western Reserve University Residence Hall Association has my highest recommendation and I sincerely hope you
will seriously consider them for this well-deserved award. If I can offer any additional insight or information please do not
hesitate to contact me at 216-368-2020.

Susan Nickel-Schindewolf
Associate Vice President for Student Affairs

Central Atlantic Affiliate

April 1, 2011
Laura Imbirowicz
Director Dear National Board of Directors

Kevin Sutjak It is with great pride that I write this letter in support of Case
Associate Director: Western Reserve University’s bid for School of the Year. As you read the
Administration & Finance
bid, I know that you will find the reason why CAACURH has selected
Victoria Forcina
Case Western Reserve University to be our regional School of the Year
Associate Director: recipient, and why we are strongly supporting the bid on a national level.
NRHH & Recognition
Case Western Reserve University began to redefine itself this year
Steven H. Le through various new efforts and lofty goals. However, through the strong
RCC for Bidding leadership both on the student and professional level many of these goals
were able to be accomplished and truly made it an outstanding year for the
Curtis Clark
University and their Residence Hall Association. Through producing a
RCC for Resources Development
large number of programs, advocacy initiatives, leadership development
Chelsea Hudson opportunities and facing new challenges head on it was truly an
RCC for Special Projects outstanding year.

Zach Steinmetz I am privileged to be able to represent the CAACURH region in

RCC for Presidential Relations recommending Case Western Reserve University for the School of the
Year award. Thank you for your time and consideration of Case Western
Paul Sission
No Frills Conference Chairperson
Reserve University’s bid for recognition on the national level.

Rebecca Epstein NACURH Pride,

Regional Conference Chairperson

Grant Walters
Regional Advisor

Laura Imbirowicz
Regional Director
Central Atlantic Affiliate of College and University Residence Halls

“Student Voice in the Residence Halls”

Central Atlantic Affiliate