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Checking Out

President’s Corner Greetings OACUHO! April is undoubtedly my favourite month of the entire year. After a long winter, I find joy in simple things that come with spring. Whether waking up to birds singing, watching the sunset as I walk home from work, or enjoying that first sunny patio session, April comes with the promise of a new season and new beginnings. Simultaneously, we prepare to say goodbye to the students and staff that we have been co-creating powerful residence communities with since August. Closing experiences come at award banquets, final dinners and ultimately with our students checking out and finishing their 2012-2013 residence experience. Your 2012-2013 OACUHO Board of Directors has been working diligently since June furthering the work of the association. As President, I had two main goals this year. First was to build a strong team among the Board of Directors and second was to engage OACUHO members for all 360 days between our spring conferences. With our last Board face to face meeting before “1000 Possibilities” at Queen’s be-

hind us, I am happy to report a strong united team exists among the board. Despite several changes to our group, the Board has stepped up to produce high quality work. We have worked alongside incredibly engaged committee members, taskforce members and volunteers that have lead to a productive year. Thank you for continuing to check in and continuing to contribute to OACUHO this year. As we transition to a new Board and a new year for OACUHO, I look forward to the possibilities and opportunities that lie ahead. Yours truly, Jen Gonzales OACUHO President @jengonzales8

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sure.” Reframing March and April in these words adds a measure of intention and commitment to what could otherwise become an easy coast through the Checking Out last final month or so of the term. Model this paraIn the hope of adding our own special twist, we want digm shift for your staff and colleagues: engage in self -reflection practices such as journaling or letters to to talk about ourselves as professional staff not finishing the year with a bang: remaining motivated, for- yourself, create memory walls or boxes to commemoward-thinking and engaged with our current staff de- rate the year’s experiences, and celebrate all the learning, growth, and accomplishments by the whole spite the academic year’s looming end. Since hiring has or is about to wrap up at most of our institutions, team. it is easy to fall into the trap of looking forward to a new team, a new place or a fresh start. But wait! We Although springtime weather and the end of classes encourage you to stay present-minded: you and your can make everyone a little antsy (including ourselves!), we are confident that with some intentional staff have gone through tons of ups and downs programming and self-reflection, we’ll all come out of throughout the term and now is the time for you to March with a renewed sense of purpose and enthusienjoy the hard work you’ve all put in. asm! One strategy that we’ve found highly effective both for ourselves and our student staff is shifting our par- Caleigh Minshall and Jordon McLinden adigm from “end of the year” to “community clo-

Mid Level Training Institute July 9-12, 2013 at King’s University College in London, ON Mid-Level Training Institute “Solving the Mysteries” July 9-12, 2013 at King’s University College, London, ON The MLTI is designed for professionals currently employed in Housing who have at least 5 years fulltime experience in the field and who provide supervision to full-time staff.* Learning themes include: Staff Development and Management Risk Assessment and Response Career Planning and Professional Development Facilities Management Watch for the website launch announcement – coming soon! *Applications from other housing professional who don’t quite meet this criteria will be considered, if space allows.

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Updates from your 2013 OACUHO Annual Spring Conference host committee Can you believe it’s been a whole month since our last update? Hold onto your hats, because the Annual Conference is fast approaching and do we at Queen’s ever have exciting news to share! Not to mention that springtime is on its way, and our campus will return to its former state of glory. (See above photo for Grant Hall in 1919 [top left building] and below for the same storied hall today!) If you haven’t received our email updates, remember that program proposals are due March 31st and that the deadline for early bird registration is April 5th. Our website has more information on all of these topics:

Read on for more tantalizing conference details ...

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Imagine one thousand possibilities with OACUHO Meet our opening keynote, Dr. Heather Stuart Heather Stuart is a Professor in Queen’s Department of Community Health and Epidemiology and the holder of the Bell Canada Chair in Mental Health and Anti-stigma Research at Queen’s. She is also the Senior Consultant to the Mental Health Commission of Canada’s Opening Minds, Anti-stigma program. Dr. Stuart’s research focuses on mental health services and stigma. She has written about mental health needs assessments; suicide and suicide prevention; stigma and stigma reduction; and workplace mental health. Her most recent work, to be explored in her keynote, deals with anti-stigma programming and human rights legislation.

New program format option: ResTalks! Could they be for you? Take advantage of this year’s innovative new program format option. Drawing inspiration from the wildly popular TEDTalk format, ResTalks are 10-15 minute-long presentations on topics that excite you: current success, future directions, previous paths, and the road not taken.

Experience Fort Henry—the traditional way Get ready to get rude (and go against all our approachability training while we’re at it)! One of this year’s socials will take you to Fort Henry, where traditional eighteenth-century soldier- servants demand to be treated with the (dis)respect they deserved in the historical mess hall. Meanwhile, the Chief Housing Officers will enjoy a mysteriously-named Fort Henry Spirits Tour ...

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Volunteer Management OACUHO – PD Committee Volunteers are an absolute necessity in many organizations. Post-secondary Housing Departments are no exception. Overflowing with ideas and projects, our departments are often faced with limited resources and as a result, we find ourselves working with a high number of volunteers. This population is incredibly valuable and must not be overlooked. In this article, you will find best practices for managing your volunteer positions, as well as resources to further your education in this area, both formally and informally. Housing departments have a unique role in volunteer management. We have the privilege of a target rich environment to recruit volunteers. Using volunteers allows us to contribute to the student experience in a new and meaningful way. Making use of volunteers helps us to continue to work towards our goals of a vibrant residence experience that develops our students. Incorporating volunteer positions gives residents (particularly first year students) the opportunity to get involved, make connections, and start to gain valuable experience. Our organization, OACUHO, does a great job of incorporating and working with volunteers in a positive way. This is a great example of an organization that relies heavily on volunteers and role models many of the best practices listed below. OACUHO has a formalized process that seeks to involve their volunteers, values and recognizes volunteers for their contributions, and provides numerous development opportunities. Keep reading to learn more! Best Practices in Volunteer Management Value your volunteers- Volunteers who feel valued and appreciated will be more committed, motivated, and productive. Communicate your commitment to volunteers – through your mission statement, recruitment documents, training manuals, etc. Train other staff members to understand the value of volunteers and how they should be working with the volunteer group Create a program/process to recruit, train, and recognize volunteers. Ensure your volunteers have adequate resources (equipment, supplies, space, etc.) to complete their tasks Include your volunteers whenever possible- meetings, departmental emails, evaluation processes, etc. Ensure the volunteer position has value for the volunteer. If they can see how they are affecting change, they will be more motivated. Formalize the volunteer process- Create and follow policies that outline the expectations of volunteers, the application process to volunteer, determine if/how volunteers will be screened, and any other processes or procedures. Creating a formal job description for volunteers (as you would paid employees) will help to increase the commitment level of volunteers and keep your department organized and operating efficiently. Train volunteers appropriately- Implement a formalized training program for volunteers- providing them with information on your organization/department (such as the mission and structure), as well as information on their specific roles. This will help volunteers to understand how their contributions will benefit the organization, keep their interest levels high, and spread the word that your organization is a great place to volunteer! Supervise volunteers appropriately- Volunteers need an outlet to give and receive feedback. This will help them to feel valued, as well as providing the organization with a fresh perspective. Provide development opportunities– Create opportunities for volunteers to grow and develop. This will increase volunteer retention by increasing their satisfaction and the perceived value of the position. These opportunities could include skill development or networking. Volunteer recognition- Seek out opportunities to recognize your volunteers for their hard work. These opportunities can be formal or informal. For example: thank you cards, certificates, awards, dinners, etc. Education- Seek out opportunities for yourself for further education and information on volunteer management.

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Fast Facts “13.3 million Canadians contribute 2.1 billion hours, the equivalent of 1.1 million full-time jobs” “47% of Canadians volunteer” “Volunteers typically contribute 156 hours per year” “Canadian volunteers are more goal-oriented, autonomous, tech-savvy and mobile” “Volunteers are looking for volunteer tasks that involve something different from their work life” “Most volunteers are looking for short-term volunteer opportunities” (Facts taken from Continuing Education George Brown College: Fundraising & Volunteer Management Certificate: cewskcrss.P_Certificate?area_code=PA0040&stream_code=PS0399&cert_code=CE0012 Humber College: Fundraising & Volunteer Management Certificate Mount Royal University: Nonprofit Management Extension Certificate British Columbia Institute of Technology: Nonprofit Management Associate Certificate

Additional Resources E Learning/Recorded Chats Volunteer Canada: Canadian Code for Volunteer Involvement:

References: topic=Playing_for_keeps_Recruiting_and_retaining_volunteer_staff_in_volunteer_run_organizations&last=164

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March 2013  
March 2013  

The March 2013 edition of OACUHO's monthly newsletter, The Pulse.