Delegates from Shippensburg University traveled to Penn State University this past weekend to exchange knowledge with more than 50 universities at the Central Atlantic Affiliate of College and University Residence Halls (CAACURH) conference.
The six delegates chosen from the SU Residence Hall Association (RHA) were selected through an application process. Dalton Becker, Savannah Brosky, Samantha Hartey, Mary Grace Keller, Renae Luckenbaugh and Jordan Pothoff were the delegates from SU.
At the convention, representatives from various universities held workshops in the PSU business building. Delegates had the option to choose which sessions to attend.
Some of the options included lessons on how to improve the creativity of RHA events while other sessions provided presentations of successful programs that had been conducted at other universities. This sharing of ideas is one of the main focuses of the CAACURH conference.
From their sessions with experienced members of RHAs across the region, SU students learned about different strategies they can use to increase participation at hall council and campus-wide events.
“Mass advertisement of the RHA at the beginning of the year can increase the participation in RHA. Higher participation in the RHA and hall council can make programming more fun, enjoyable and successful for everyone,” said Renae Luckenbaugh, an SU conference delegate.
University of Maryland’s presentation, “We Do it in the Dark” won program of the year. Sree Sinha, a student at UMD, explained the importance of green programming to benefit the environment and the overall energy usage at universities. Sinha received an award for her accomplishment.
When delegates were not attending program sessions and advisers were not sitting in on board meetings, students had the chance to interact with each other in a social setting.
A tradition of CAACURH is the swapping of decorative clothespins. Each university makes its own pins and as students meet each other they swap pins.
Case Western Reserve University, Towson University, Ohio University and Temple University are just a few of the schools that SU students were able to interact with at the conference.
CAACURH is one region out of eight in the country. Together, the eight regions comprise the National Association of College and University Residence Halls.
In June 2014, SU delegates will be able to attend the national conference at the University of Wisconsin.
The theme of the CAACURH conference this year was “The Show Must Go On.” The Penn State conference team chose this slogan to represent the idea that no matter what struggles a university goes through, obstacles will be overcome.
The atmosphere at CAACURH was fully charged the entire weekend. Delegates were chanting, dancing and learning what the RHA has to offer.
“Students who go to CAACURH are more likely to stay on campus and stay involved in a leadership role,” said Jen Milburn, assistant director for residence life and leadership.
Kyleen Classon, co-adviser of the RHA, Jackie Hubbard, national communications coordinator, and Chelsea Washington, National Residence Hall honorary chancellor, also attended the conference with the SU delegates.