RHA tours, events promote housing options


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The Stephanie Tubbs Jones (STJ) Residence Hall is the newest residence hall on campus. Formerly The Apartments at 1576, STJ opened as campus housing in 2015 and houses 290 students in 106 apartments.

If you stumbled across groups of people walking through on-campus housing facilities last weekend, this is because the Residence Hall Association (RHA) showcased potential housing options to rising students. Between Feb. 24 and 25, tour guides took their groups through the North (NRV) and South Residential Villages (SRV) to view the future residencies, but the organization has more events planned for the upcoming weeks.

For those frustrated with deceptions spread in most tours, like the idea that students will still have WEPA money left by the end of the semester, you may be relieved to know that last weekend’s tours were “as honest as possible,” according to third-year and Executive Vice President of Programming Ari Menon.

She said, “I haven’t really briefed the tour guides on what they should say. Just told them to be completely honest.”

Students who missed the opportunity to tour SRV should be aware of the renovations scheduled for Fribley Commons in early 2019, which will affect dining choices. Carlton Commons, located at the top of Murray Hill, will replace Fribley as SRV’s primary dining hall during the renovation period.

“Some of the student leaders were pulled into a meeting a few weeks back with the architects who were redoing Fribley, and we were able to see the plans,” Menon said. “Fribley looks amazing. While I’m sorry for the people who have to be [living on South Side] during the renovations, it is definitely going to be worth it.”

With housing tours finished, RHA’s current and upcoming schedule includes events specifically for the Case Western Reserve University residential communities.

“We’re pretty excited about Magnolia Mondays,” Megan Johnson, a first-year Magnolia community representative said.

Magnolia Mondays will take place on Mondays from 8:00 to 11:00 p.m., and snacks and coffee will be distributed on the first floor of each building in Magnolia Residential College.

Inspired by the Harry Potter series’ school-wide competition, another first-year residential community, Mistletoe, is currently planning a “House Cup.” The Cup will be a day long event on Mar. 24, and Mistletoe residents will compete in various games and athletic events.

Another ongoing RHA program is Food Forum, which meets once a month—alternately at Fribley and Leutner Commons—to meet with Bon Appetit management and share thoughts on the dining halls.

According to Hanna Kadlec, RHA Executive Co-Vice President of Residential Relations, “[Bon Appetit management] does listen to our suggestions.”

Food Forum has been effective in its purpose; it successfully pushed for the introduction of Kosher, Halal and Unlimited meal plans, and also raised the availability of vegan and vegetarian food options. Through their ongoing response efforts, Kadlec explained that Bon Appetit management “said they’re going to start including better labels on foods, like including allergens [and] specific dietary restrictions.”

RHA members are also promoting a major event in April: Love Where You Live Week.

“It sort of goes off our mission statement to build a sense of community within the residence halls and on campus, to get people to love where they live,” she said. “It’s basically RHA week. We’ll be showcasing a lot of performing student organizations, cultural student organizations [and] we’ll have food from a lot of local Cleveland restaurants. We’re very excited.”