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Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

All Roads Lead to Little Rock

Newsletter–Preconference 2017

Preconference 2017

In This Issue From The President................................................................. 3 Executive Board 2016–2017.................................................. 4 Committee Chairs.................................................................. 4 Executive Board Elections................................................... 5-10 Newsletter and Communications Committee.............................. 5 Rock Solid: SWACUHO Annual Conference............................ 11 From the President-Elect......................................................... 12 Arkansas State Director......................................................... 14 Texas State Director.............................................................. 17 Placement Exchange Opportunities at the SWACUHO Conference in Little Rock! ............................................... 18 Celebrating Length of Service................................................ 20 Resolve to Read!.................................................................. 22 Greetings SWACUHO and Happy 2017!............................... 24 Winter Floods – When the halls are closed and no one is home: Lessons learned............................... 26 Hello SWACUHO Region! ................................................... 28 Brownies! Hot Dogs! Service!................................................ 30


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

From The President Greetings SWACUHO! By the time the annual SWACUHO conference rolls around, many of us have forgotten our New Year’s Resolutions and are happily sitting on the couch munching chips. This year I decided to focus on a single word instead of a list of resolutions. My word is THANKFUL. While I may not hit my step goal every day or journal 5 days each week, I can surely remember how much I have to be thankful for. I am thankful for a year to serve this organization as president. I am thankful to work for an employer who supports my involvement both financially and with time away from the office. I am thankful for the host committee and their work in putting together this conference. For all the committee members, chairs, exec board members, moderators, and everyone, let me proclaim how thankful I am for your service to our organization and profession. I am thankful for our student leaders, our on call staff, and our campus partners. I am thankful for the work you do. The late night calls and visits when we

need help; for the support and engagement in the co-curricular experience and the assistance in our training and development. I am thankful for great colleagues and campus partners. I am thankful that parents trust us to help mold their children. I am thankful for eager student leaders who actively seek out our profession and will be the next generation of Student Staff and Hall Directors. As you enter into your spring semester, my challenge to each of you is to think of one word to keep you motivated and engaged in our profession. Find a way to keep this word close – put it on your fridge, your desktop, your lock screen on your phone- wherever you can see it to keep you centered. For many schools, the spring is the busiest semester and we can get bogged down – use your word to stay the course and finish out the year.

Tanya Arflin Massey Assistant Director, Programs and Development Oklahoma State University

I hope to see you soon in Little Rock. The host committee has a great conference planned for us. If you haven’t registered, please do it now!

Thank you, Tanya Massey



Preconference 2017

Executive Board

The 2016-2017 Executive Bo


Executive Board

Tanya Massey

Janis J. Haney

Kenny Mauk

Ele Luna



Past President



Oklahoma State University

Texas Tech University

University of Houston

Southern Methodist

University of Arkansas


Megan M. Witherspoon

Mere Maddox

Dan Mizer

Adonis Thompson

Chad Martin

Katy Pelton

Technology Coordinator


Arkansas State Director

Oklahoma State Director

Texas State Director

Texas Women's

Texas A&M University

Arkansas State University

Southwestern Oklahoma

Sam Houston State


State University



Committee Chairs

David Cooper

J.C. Stoner

Beth Eppinger

Brett Manley

Eric Johnson

Time & Place

Recognition and Awards

Program Co-Chair

Program Co-Chair

Texas Christian University

Research, Assessment, and Information

University of Arkansas

Navarro College

University of

University of Texas

at Ft. Smith

at Arlington


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

North Texas

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

Executive Board Elections One of the most rewarding challenges for the Past President is to convene the nominating committee and recruit members at large who are willing to seek a position on the Executive Board. The nominating committee consists of the Past-President and the three State Directors. Criteria for Executive Board positions are outlined in The SWACUHO Organizational Handbook as: General criteria for officers, state directors, and committee chairs: • Selection of a slate of officers and appointments of committee chairs should fairly represent all of the various constituencies represented throughout the region. The spirit of nominations and appointments should support the SWACUHO diversity

I am very happy and proud to announce that this year there are three members who are seeking the office of Secretary and three members who are seeking the office of President-Elect. As part of the nominating process each of the candidates was asked to submit a biography or personal statement statement. All officers and appointees must be willing to serve the association and have institutional support for their service. Criteria for Secretary or Treasurer: • School is a paid member of SWACUHO. • Person is an active member of SWACUHO. • It is preferred that the person nominated has previously served as a committee chair.

for inclusion in the SWACUHO Newsletter. They were also asked to submit a letter of support from their supervisor. Elections will be conducted during the Business Meeting at the 2017 Annual Conference. The candidates’ statements are continued on page 6 Criteria for President-elect: • School is a paid member of SWACUHO. • Person is an active member of SWACUHO. • It is preferred that the person nominated has previously served as a committee chair. • It is preferred that the person nominated has previously served on the Executive Committee of SWACUHO.

Newsletter and Communications Committee Gloria Allen University of Texas at Austin

Rachel Riggs Angelo State

Olivia Stankey Oklahoma State University

Desiree Johnson University of Central Arkansas

Lauren Carter University of Central Oklahoma

Katy Pelton Sam Houston State University

Tim Jordan Texas Christian University

Laura Glasgow University of Central Oklahoma

Cequinta Robinson Texas Woman’s University

David M. Wilson West Texas A&M University

Nicole Brown University of Tulsa

Brandon Harris University of Central Arkansas

Cassandra Winland University of Texas at Dallas

TJ Pegg University of North Texas

Ricardo Williams University of North Texas



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Elections, continued: President-Elect Candidates David Cooper (Coop) received his Master of Higher Education Administration degree from West Virginia University and his Bachelor of Arts degree from Fairmont State University. Coop currently serves Texas Christian University as Associate Director for Housing and Residence Life. At TCU he works closely with training, crisis response, liaison to athletics, hall budgets, inclusion programming, and leadership organizations (Hall Crew (TCU’s RHA) and NRHH). Coop has worked at a variety of both public and private institutions of higher education including: Davis & Elkins College, University of Maryland, Kean University, Louisiana State University, and University of Toledo. In between working at these institutions, he took a two year leave from higher education to work for Coca-Cola Enterprises as a training manager. Coop’s professional interests involve residential inclusion, mediation, leadership, and conduct. He has written articles for The Talking Stick and other professional journals; has served in leadership positions for ACUHO-I (Chair International Study Tour) the Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers (currently chair of Time and Place) and Mid-Atlantic

Association of College and University Housing Officers (DC Metro Rep and member of Personal and Professional Development Committee). Coop is currently enrolled in the Fort Worth Leadership Fort Worth Training Institute and was selected as group leader by his peers. If elected as President for SWACUHO, he will focus on the following items: • Inclusion – How can we supply the region with educational tools? Explore cultural competencies and how they can impact our organization. • Membership relationships – How can we cultivate conversations with each other to explore best practices to make us more efficient and have executive board accessible to all members? Our strength is our membership. • Bench strength – How can we help develop SWACUHO’s up and coming leaders? • Organizational strategy – Are we fiscally responsible? Are we efficient in administrative tasks? Are we user friendly to our members? What is our relationship like with ACUHO-I and ACUHO-I Foundation?


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

Curtis Odle received his Master of Arts in Education from the University of Incarnate Word and his Bachelor of Science in Engineering Science from Trinity University. Curtis works at Baylor University as Assistant Director for Facilities and Operations. At Baylor University, he serves as the point person for maintenance and construction projects for Campus Living & Learning and manages conference housing. Curtis has opened two 350-bed residence halls and completed the refurbishment of three vintage residence halls in the past four years. At previous universities, Curtis served as Assistant Director of Residence Life overseeing recruitment, training and supervision of student staff, student discipline, supervision of graduate assistants and hall directors. Prior to working in housing, Curtis worked in the private sector as a HVAC engineer. Since entering the field of housing, Curtis has called SWACUHO home. As a new professional, he began serving the association by joining the Programming Committee. He served as chair of the Research & Information Committee for two years back

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

Elections, continued: President-Elect Candidates when association surveys were printed and mailed. He also served on Exhibits & Displays and Mid-Level over the years. In 2012, Curtis was elected treasurer for the association, serving for two consecutive terms. During this time, he faithfully monitored the financial health of the association. In 2016, Curtis served as the Host Committee Co-Chair when Baylor hosted the Golden Jubilee annual conference in Waco, Texas. Curtis wants to be president of SWACUHO, not for his own gain, but to serve the members of the association he has called home for more than a decade. He can bring to the table a variety of professional experience as well as knowledge gained from serving the association in multiple ways, including managing the finances for four years on the Executive Council and hosting an annual conference. It would be his honor to serve yet again as president.

Adonis Thompson received his Bachelor of Science in Radio/TV Production in 2003 and his Masters of Science in College Student Personnel Services in 2009 from Arkansas State University. Adonis works as the Associate Director of Residence Life for Operations at Arkansas State University. Within his position he provides guidance for the Operations staff and helps in the retention and growth of the on-campus population. He also help to spearhead the start of the Global Engagement housing program to help international students transition easier to life in the USA and at A-State. Prior to returning to A-State, he worked as a Complex Director at Valdosta State University in Valdosta, GA. During his time at VSU, he worked to establish new standards for the department, increase the recruitment footprint of the Graduate Hall Director Staff and also establish a new training regimen for graduate staff.

groups and mentoring students. He enjoys writing monthly articles for the newsletter and serving in leadership positions on committees/executive board positions within the Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers, Arkansas State University and Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Incorporated. During his time working with SWACUHO he helped to establish the Diversity and Social Justice track for program to help give an avenue to discuss issues that affect many of the schools in the region.

His professional interest include working to incorporating housing databases, occupancy management, setting administrative and accountability standards, working with specialized housing



Preconference 2017

Elections, continued: Secretary Candidates Maggie Guzman It is with great enthusiasm that I submit this letter to express my interest in running for the Secretary position on the SWACUHO Executive Board. SWACUHO has been my professional home since I attended my first conference, “Viva SWACUHO” in San Antonio in 2002. I love being a member of this organization; it has been a source of professional growth for me, not only in skills related to my work, but also for me as a person. Through SWACUHO, I have had the good fortune to have built a network of colleagues I can call on for support and assistance, which I honestly do not believe I could have done without the encouragement and mentorship I have received over the years from some seasoned members.


Over the past 14 years, I have had the opportunity to give back to SWACUHO in a variety of ways. I have been a member of several committees, including the Newsletter Committee, the Awards and Recognition Committee, the Time and Place Committee, the MidLevel Administration Committee, and the Program Committee. Additionally, I had the honor of chairing the Host Committee for the 2012 conference, which was one of the most rewarding professional opportunities of my career and was an experience through which I learned a tremendous amount

about how SWACUHO functions as an organization. Being Host Committee chair led me to two terms on the Executive Board: first as Technology Coordinator, then as Texas State Director. During my time on the Executive Board, I really gained a new appreciation for SWACUHO and for those who have lead us. I feel privileged to have served my colleagues across the region and I learned much from my fellow Executive Board members. I have decided to run for Secretary because I miss being involved in SWACUHO and really have a desire to once again serve the organization I owe so much to. I believe I have the skills it takes to be a good Secretary. My bachelor’s degree is in English, which has come in handy during my career for incident report writing, and is also good for taking thorough, accurate meeting minutes, which is the Secretary’s primary responsibility. I am also familiar with how the Executive Board runs, and have taken notes for the board before when previous secretaries had to miss conference calls or other meetings. Additionally, my ‘day job’ is in Risk Management, and I feel like I am able to use that critical lens to bring a perspective that can help the board make sound decisions. I sincerely appreciate your consideration of my candidacy for Secretary and promise that if elected, I will serve SWACUHO with dedication and pride. 2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

Dr. Genevra “Gennie” Lynn is a native Texan who received her Bachelor of Arts in English with a minor in Journalism from Emporia State University in Emporia, Kansas. After discovering residence life at ESU, Gennie returned to her hometown of Bryan, Texas to earn her Master of Science in Student Affairs Administration in Higher Education at Texas A&M University in College Station. It was SWACUHO 2004 where Gennie found her home within the region and with the SWACUHO organization. Gennie joined the programming committee in 2004. After receiving her Master’s degree in May 2005, Gennie moved up to Tulsa, Oklahoma where she worked as an area coordinator for the East Side at the University of Tulsa. Gennie continued her involvement in SWACUHO with the programming committee as well as attending the annual conference. In 2009, during her last year as SWACURH Regional Advisor, Gennie was asked to present at the New Professionals Institute, held at UT-Dallas. Gennie earned an honorable mention for the University of Tulsa for the Frank Cloud Award in 2006. Gennie returned to Texas in May 2010 to Stephen F. Austin State University where she began her doctoral program in Educational

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

Elections, continued: Secretary Candidates Leadership in Higher Education while developing the first year program for SFASU. Gennie had the opportunity to return to Texas A&M University in 2012 where she became a coordinator for the southside. In the spring of 2013, Gennie was appointed to the chairperson for the Professional Development Committee within SWACUHO (formerly known as Human Resource Development Committee). During her three year tenure with the Professional Development Committee, Gennie organized, planned, and executed three successful SWACUHO-U conferences for new professionals (formerly known as NPI). She also orchestrated the name change of the committee to better align with the goals and mission of the committee. Gennie has presented countless programs at SWACUHO and with the student organization, SWACURH. In October, 2015, Gennie served as the SWACURH conference advisor for the annual student leadership conference which was held at Texas A&M University. On November 24, 2015, Gennie officially became Dr. Lynn when she successfully defended her dissertation at Stephen F. Austin State University. Her research was

based in mentoring and student leadership, through a lens of an ethic of care. Her dissertation, titled “A grounded theory of caring behavior in student affairs mentoring relationships� can be found online through ProQuest (No. 10128797). Through her research, Dr. Lynn developed a framework to better aid new professionals, and even some seasoned ones, to become better mentors to help our student leaders be more successful. After taking a short break from a leadership role within SWACUHO to recoup and rest after a difficult couple of years for her personally, she is ready to return to her SWACUHO family and give back to the organization which has continued to support her throughout her career. As secretary for SWACUHO, Dr. Lynn brings many different skills to the organization. She is very detail oriented, organized, energetic and passionate about the work done in housing across our region and the world on college and university campuses. Dr. Lynn is very timely on communication and thrives on completing things in a timely and efficient manner. She is thrilled to have this opportunity to help the region move forward into the future.

On a personal level, Dr. Lynn enjoys working with student leaders, specifically student leaders in the residence halls, and helping them develop into great citizens of the world. She also enjoys spending time with her dogs, Ginny Penny and G. Rollie, as well as planning out her Halloween decorations for her house all year. She loves college football and can usually be found tailgating in the fall during every home Aggie game with her friends and family. Since the discovery of free time post-doctoral degree, Dr. Lynn has taken back up arts and crafts, including coloring and painting. Dr. Lynn is looking forward to working towards writing more publications to include in her repertoire. She has contributed to articles in the ACUHO-I Talking Stick as well as authored multiple articles over the years for the SWACUHO newsletter. She has been published in a peer reviewed journal with an article on female university presidents and is currently working towards contributing to a chapter in a book on mentoring and student leadership.



Preconference 2017

Elections, continued: Secretary Candidates Don Yackley It is with enthusiasm that I share my interest and application to be Secretary for the association. I have thoroughly enjoyed my membership. I have personally and professionally benefited from my involvement with SWACUHO and ACUHO-I and wish to contribute my experience and time in support of the association and its mission. I started my career as a Resident Assistant in 1988-89 and have been fortunate to have a 28 year career in student housing. I have been privileged to work at eight institutions across four regions. During that time, I have had some pretty big successes and have continued to grow and learn.

Some specific information that might be helpful for you to know in considering me for the secretary position include:

-NWACUHO New Professionals Scholarship Committee (2005 2006)

• I have over 17 years’ experience in a director role

-ACUHO-I Chief Housing Officers Institute participant (2006)

• My involvement experience regionally and with ACUHO-I includes:

My top 5 Strengths Quest are: Connectedness/Empathy/ Developer/Positivity/Input.

-Chair, ACUHO-I Housing Internship Committee (term ends July 2017)

I’m an introvert who is prone to the sentimental and cheesy, but I step up loud when needed.

-ACUHO-I Program Committee, program reviewer (2013 2015)

My motivation for being involved is simply to serve, help out as much as I can, build connections, and give back.

-NWACUHO State of Oregon Representative (2006)

-NWACUHO New Professionals Committee member (2005 2006)

If chosen I will be present, engaged, and follow-through. I am available to answer further questions. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Kenny Mauk Past President University of Houston


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

Rock Solid: SWACUHO Annual Conference Join us March 5-7, 2017 in downtown Little Rock for a Rock Solid annual conference. While everyone is winding down from Winter Break and getting back in the groove of things, the 2017 Annual Conference Host Committee is gearing up to bring you a conference that is sure to be “Rock Solid”. In 2017 we are bringing you a conference that is sincere, original, and intentional. This year’s annual conference is hosted by the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and Arkansas State University - Beebe and will be held in Little Rock, Arkansas, the heart of the Natural State. The Host Committee has been one to ask many questions and challenge the status quo to bring you what we believe will be a memorable annual conference. One of the things that is going to make this a conference you won’t forget is the Hospitality Suite that will be

open Sunday and Monday evenings for you to catch up with old friends and make new ones. We have also partnered with the Museum of Discovery to bring you “SWACUHO’s Night of Discovery” where you can watch the world’s largest Tesla coil bring music to your ears and catch a couple of awesome science shows. The great part of the Museum of Discovery is that all science displays are hands-on and allow guests the opportunity to learn while having fun! This is a just a small sample of what the Host Committee has in store for the 2017 SWACUHO Annual Conference. The Statehouse Convention Center, the Marriott Hotel and the 2017 Host Committee are ready, and we hope you are too! While in Little Rock, make sure you check out some of the attractions that put us on the map, from the Clinton Presidential Library to the Central High School Museum.

See you in Little Rock!

Michelle Zengulis Assistant Director Res Life University of Arkansas at Little Rock



Preconference 2017

From the President-Elect Hello SWACUHO Friends,

Janis Haney President-Elect Texas Tech University

This academic year is flying by. It feels like just yesterday that we were in WACO, enjoying the amazing Baylor hospitality under the leadership of Co-Host Rob Engblom. Now we are looking forward to Little Rock and the hospitality of University of Arkansas Little Rock under the leadership of Co-Host, Rikki Turner. So much planning is going on in Arkansas, Oklahoma and Texas to make sure that the SWACUHO Conference March 5 - 7, 2017 is a great success. Tanya has mentioned that she is THANKFUL. I, too, would like to add my thanks for an amazing SWACUHO year. Thank you to Rikki Turner and the Host 2017 Team for preparing to welcome us to the Great State of Arkansas. Thank you also to Tanya Massey, President, and Kenny Mauk, Past President, for


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

taking me under their wing and showing me the ropes and holding my hand as I swing from those ropes. Thank you to the Board and Committee Chairs and members for an awesome Mid-Year meeting and all of your work throughout the year. And WOW, it is a lot of work. Lots of new friendships have been made and lots of old friendships have been nourished. As we look forward to SWACUHO 2017, I have been working on appointments for Oklahoma and Arkansas State Directors. I have also been working on several chair appointments. Thank you to everyone that has agreed to serve! Most of all, thank you to all members of SWACUHO for entrusting us as your Board to continue the work of those that have gone before us. See you in Little Rock soon! Janis

Preconference 2017

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers




Preconference 2017

Arkansas State Director Hello SWACUHO!!!

Adonis Thompson Associate Director of Residence Life for Operations Arkansas State University

With the start of a new year, that means we are one step closer to the SWACUHO Annual Conference. This is a great chance to connect with other colleagues within the region, learn new things and also get more involved within SWACUHO. My memories of SWACUHO conferences are filled with laughter, knowledge gained and appreciation of what I do and who I do it for. SWACUHO offers something for everyone, and it is important that professionals encourage the up and coming staff members to get involved. From graduate employees to new professionals, getting them involved in the organization will prove beneficial as they continue to develop


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

professionally. This is a chance to not only pass the torch to the future of our organization, but also stay connected with the changes that are on the horizon. From attending sessions, joining and actively working with a committee, and taking on leadership positions, a young professional can truly impact the organization, their campus and the field as a whole. I look forward to seeing you all in Little Rock, Arkansas for an amazing conference. There will be some great sessions and entertainment to follow. It takes a lot to run a conference and the Host Committee looks to carry on the great tradition of outstanding annual conferences. I look forward to connecting with you and continuing to serve this great organization alongside you all.

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers



Preconference 2017


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

Texas State Director Greetings SWACUHO TEXAS: SWACUHO 2017 will soon be here and we are excited to see everyone! We would like to encourage all Texas attendees to attend the Texas Caucus meeting. The SWACUHO 2017 program guide will have the specific date and time for the meeting. During this meeting we have the opportunity to discuss any legislation, trends, concerns, etc… applicable to Texas institutions. As we enter 2017, we’re all facing several hot topics: FLSA changes and injunction, 60x30TX, SB11 outcomes and more! I hope you’ll all join me at the State Caucus meeting during the

Annual Conference to discuss some of these things that we’re all experiencing here in Texas. Want to be on the Texas Caucus agenda? Please email your SWACUHO Texas State Director,, for more information. It’s not too late to register for the Annual Conference! We will be in Little Rock this year. It would be fantastic to see lots of representation from our great state! To register, visit and click on the “SWACUHO 2017 Annual Conference” link under the calendar section. I’m looking forward to seeing you all soon! In the meantime, don’t hesitate to reach out if you need anything!

Katy Pelton SWACUHO Texas State Director Sam Houston State University



Preconference 2017

Placement Exchange Opportunities at the SWACUHO C Attention SWACUHO Nation, By popular demand, your Placement Committee is bringing back the “Service” of offering placement exchange opportunities at the SWACUHO Conference in Little Rock! This would be a miniature version of The Placement Exchange (TPE) or the Southern Placement Exchange (SPE). Employers and candidates can connect at the Conference, and use our Placement Room to hold formal or informal interviews.

Marietta de la Rosa Placement Committee University of Texas – San Antonio


Employers: Our Committee will utilize a large bulletin board to post all of the one page position advertisements that are sent to us prior to the Conference. Institutions that decide to participate once they arrive can just bring their own print out to us, and we will add it to the board.

will be sure to post the Placement Room hours of availability, so feel free to utilize the Room for your interviews.

Candidates: Our Committee will utilize a binder to place any resumes that are sent to us prior to the Conference. Candidates decide to participate once they arrive can just bring their printed resume to us, and we will add it to the binder. We will create a mailbox for each candidate; institutions that are interested in meeting with you will fill out one of our Interest Forms, and place it in your box. We will also have a large bulletin board with position advertisements from institutions that are participating. If you see a position that peaks your interest, you can also use the Interest Form, and place it in the institution’s box.

We will create a mailbox for your institution; candidates that are interested in meeting with you will fill out one of our Interest Forms, and place it in your mailbox.

After that, it’s all up to you! We will be sure to post the Placement Room hours of availability, so feel free to utilize the Room for your interviews.

We will also have a binder of resumés from candidates that are participating. If you see a candidate that peaks your interest, you can also use the Interest Form, and place it in the candidate’s mailbox.

Questions- please reach out to Em de la Rosa (210-458-6208;, Corey Wheeler (936-294-3155;, or Rachel Kepner (512-245-2628; rkepner@

Be sure to check your mailbox as often as you can.

See you in Little Rock!!

After that, it’s all up to you! We 2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

Conference in Little Rock!



Preconference 2017

Celebrating Length of Service University Student Housing at Texas Tech University looks for any opportunity to celebrate the work we do, the people we work with, and the students we serve. How does the modern work place typically celebrate length of service to the organization? Usually with a certificate, and a token of appreciation—a pin, or coffee mug for example. We have a long tradition of “having a party” to celebrate our employees who have decided to make a career and a home within our department. Each December, for at least the last 35 years, the University Student Housing department and the Hospitality Services department have gathered together to celebrate the loyalty, dedication, hard work, and length of service of our employees. This celebration is a tradition valued by both departments and the employees being recognized. In some segments of our industry, change in staff and high turnover can be very common. In other areas a long service record may be more common. Regardless, when an employee spends years of their life serving students, their organization, institution, and in many cases their state or creed;

why not throw a party? All full time staff members, when they have achieved their 8th year of continuous departmental service, receive their “Golden Ticket” invitation to attend our annual event. This year University Student Housing had 62 eligible staff members with 1043 years of service within the department. For USH, these employees represent 30% of our work force! Hospitality Services had 67 staff members with 930 years of service. Our organizational culture would not function the same without the knowledge, leadership, commitment, loyalty and dedication of these employees. Our longest serving employee, Janie Juarez, has been with the department for 44 years. (I kid her that I was 6 years old when she came to work for Texas Tech!) Another interesting fact is she has worked at Texas Tech for just under half the time Tech has been in existence. (I also tell her I can never thank her enough for all of the good things she does to make Texas Tech and University Student Housing the best we can be!) For some perspective, the next longest serving employee is Kevin Tunnell


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

with 34 years—he will have to stick around awhile to top Janie’s record service. I often think of my own memories and stories over the years. Hard to imagine 44 years of change, memories, co-workers and how different the place must look from that first day of work! Our event starts with a reception followed by a gourmet meal prepared by our Top Tier Catering, a unit within Hospitality Services. The chefs and staff take special care to make this event’s meal extra special as we “serve” our own family. After the meal, words are shared and our new invitees are welcomed and recognized with their first certificate and departmental pin. Additional employees are celebrated on five year increments, 10, 15, 20 etc. A photographer takes pictures which are shared on our Flickr as well as copies provided to each employee. Each employee does receive an updated

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11:30 a

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

Texas Tech University

University Student Housing & Hospitality Services Length of Service Honorees | December 8, 2016

certificate, celebrating their total number of years.

We have had employees leave the department but come back at a later date. For this celebration, the clock of service starts over and they must wait until they have eight years of continuous service g to be invited again. n usi dent Ho rsity Stuand Our celebration ices lity Serv Hospita is different than r 8, 2016 Decembe vres hursday, ors D’oeu il and H sa as W university length h a.m. – . – Lunc 1:00 p.m Noon to llroom erket Ba M ni of service: ours m Alu rsity ch Unive Texas Te is departmental service—which can coincide with university service. However, some employees transition to us with years of university service—but their clock of departmental service starts new. (I hope that wasn’t too confusing.)

nual to the an invited cordially rvice Luncheon e Se rvic se of ngth Of s ar your ye noring

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44 Years Janie Juarez* 34 Years Kevin Tunnell* 33 Years Alicia Marez* 32 Years Barbara Gonzales* 31 Years Travis Findley* Abby Pena* 29 Years Dale Blevins* 28 Years April Bowers Mark McVay* Deborah Stanley 27 Years Margie Garza* Bonnie Morris* Cyndi Turnipseed Art Quest 26 Years Maria Bibbs Theresa Dalley Janis Haney* 25 Years Sean Duggan* 24 Years Ruben Alonzo 22 Years Michael Gonzalez* Antonio Regalado Kirk Rodriguez Gloria Torrez 21 Years Valerie Valdez*

13 Years Dolly Garcia Isabel Hernandez Jesus Hernandez Christy Norfleet Kimberly Ruiz Yesenia Sanchez Maria Tolentino* Tohi Trout Kenneth Winegar*

20 Years Billy Carman* Bobby Davila* Erma Daye* Lisa Dorman* John Garner* Alexander Torrez Yolanda Torres 19 Years Aric Bibbs John Ramirez* Mary Ramirez*

12 Years Maria Galarza Joseph Martinez Maria Mendez* Estela Muro* Aurora Rivera

18 Years Karen Hoffman Melanie Tatum* Ninfa Platero* 17 Years Christine Glenn* Paula Ann Petmecky Cecilia Rivera 16 Years Jeff Caperton Donna Foster* Tosha Foster Henry Flores* Maria Mendez Rueda* Michael Montalvo* Carol Morales Ana Sanchez 15 Years Michael Betzold Rosemarie Duran Gary Jimenez* Margaret Wilson

11 Years Mindi Aleman Paul Centilli Jimmy De La Cruz Alan Cushman David Deason Gilbert Espinosa Deana Fleming Alberto Hernandez* Linda Hymes Chris Johns Dewey McMurrey Guadalupe Salcido Muro* Teena Samudia Abbey Sanchez Silvia Velasco*

14 Years Roy Avalos* Martha Barajas* Carla Winchell Tina Williams

10 Years Sharen Black* Leticia Garcia* Richard Dave Gray Elsa Lopez* Ramon Moreno* Concepcion Paniagua Maria Muro Salcido*

9 Years Manuela Baeza* Carla Cortez Gilbert Iglesias* Ramona Hyatt* Juan Jokamoto Brandon Marcy Angelica Regalado Marisol Rodriguez Michele Stinson Jennell Taylor Jose Valenciano* Sheila Villarreal Mark Williamson* Socorro Zuniga* 8 Years Lucinda Arguello Neomi Aguirre Sylvia Contreras Mark Anthony Doss* Daizy Marie Duede* Sylvana M Flores* David Garcia Janie P Garcia* Mike Glass Juanita Gloria Melvis Hawkins* Alejandra Hernandez Margarita Guadalupe Herrera* Jacqueline Kay Kimbler* Craig R Kuehnert* Victor Neals Ross O’Connor* Rhonda Odom Elizabeth Prado Francisco Torres Lerma* Barbara Sterling Jessica Torres Ygnacio Patrick Urrutia * *University Student Housing

A lot of time, work and effort goes into our yearly celebration/ tradition. However, the time to celebrate with coworkers while acknowledging and valuing their service is worth the effort. I hope you have or create great ways to value the gift of your employees’ time, dedication, and hard work!

Sean Duggan Director Texas Tech University



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Resolve to Read! Happy New Year from the Research, Assessment, and Information Committee (RAI)! I challenge everyone in our Association to add a resolution to your list for the upcoming year: read more. There is a lot of great literature out there, and some of it has even documented a decline in professional engagement with literature (Saunders, Register, Cooper, Bates, & Doddona, 2000). Having scholarship literacy is good professional development, so make this year the year you consumed more research; not just for yourself, but for your students and your department. For instance, have any of your RAs struggled with decision making? Perhaps Stark and Anderson’s (2016) recent article “Moral Development of Resident

Assistants: A Lived Experience” may be of interest to you. Is your department talking about gender neutral housing? Do you want to have a strong voice in that conversation? Then I suggest you check out “The Implementation of Gender-Neutral Housing: A MixedMethods Study Across ACUHOI Member Institutions” (Taub, Johnson, Reynolds, 2016) as a starting point. Both of these articles can be found in The Journal of College and University Student Housing Volume 42, Issue 2. Are you in charge of RA recruitment at your institution? Perhaps you may find “Selecting Resident Assistants: The Relationship Between Candidate Assessment and Job Performance” (Berg & Stoner, 2016) and the subsequent commentary about the


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

traditionally used group-process evaluations of interest. Molina (2016) uses superhero imagery with early-career housing staff to discuss emergency management in the article “On Becoming Batman: An Ethnographic Examination of Hero Imagery in Early-Career Residential Life Emergency Management.” Who doesn’t love superheroes right now?! Both of these articles can be found in The Journal of College and University Student Housing special issue on Resident Assistants, Volume 42, Issue 3. Looking forward, at the annual conference this year, the RAI committee will be presenting the results of their study analyzing the interview questions we, as a region, are asking during entrylevel interviews. This session will

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

not only provide you with a deeper knowledge of interview questions and processes, but also grow your knowledge of employing qualitative research methods in simple ways. In conjunction with this presentation, the RAI committee will be submitting to the SWACUHO membership a bank of interview questions organized by theme for consumption. This bank will include all participating department’s questions used during last year’s entry-level recruitment season. Whatever your goals are for this year, please block off some time on your calendar each week for reading, whether that is The Chronicle of Higher Education or any of the professional journals out there. Trust me, your future professional self will thank you.

References Berg, S. A., & Stoner, J. C. (2016). Selecting resident assistants: The relationship between candidate assessment and job performance. The Journal of College and University Student Housing, 42(3), 26–36. Molina, D. K. (2016). On becoming Batman: An ethnographic examination of hero imagery in early-career residential life emergency management. The Journal of College and University Student Housing, 42(3), 98110. Saunders, S. A., Register, M. D., Cooper, D. L., Bates, J. M., & Daddona, M. F. (2000). Who is writing research articles in student affairs journals? Practitioner involvement and collaboration. Journal of College Student Development, 41(6), 609615. Stark, R. H., & Anderson, S. K. (2016). Moral behavior of resident assistants: A lived experience. The Journal of College and University Student Housing, 42(2), 10–24. Taub, D. J., Johnson, R. B., & Reynolds, T. (2016). The implementation of gender-neutral housing: A mixed-methods study across ACUHOI member institutions. The Journal of College and University Student Housing, 42(2), 76–93.

J.C. Stoner Research, Assessment, and Information Committee Chair University of Texas at Arlington



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Greetings SWACUHO and Happy 2017! Hopefully the New Year has brought agreeable weather to your area, and if it didn’t hopefully you received a warm coat and gloves for the holidays. With a new semester, and a new national champion in college football, we look forward to what we will achieve over the course of this semester. The start of the New Year traditionally brings a sense of “out with the old, in with the new”. The pomp and circumstance of our holiday décor is cleared for the abundant joy of clean minimal spaces (especially if you received IKEA gift cards). Old habits are shelved in favor of the new as we resolve to start the New Year fresh, to boldly go where we have not gone before. Perhaps some resolutions will stick while others will fall by the wayside (the idea of SMART goals can go right out the window as we envision the glory of our new self on January 1st!) Whether goals are achieved or not, I am a big fan of the act of resolution as I believe that the self-reflection that comes part and


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

parcel with the process allows for us to explore where we assign meaning in our lives and work. Whether or not I actually run a marathon in 2017 does not negate the internal work it took to acknowledge the need for a healthier lifestyle. Whether or not I start a doctoral program does not negate the internal commitment to engage more deeply in the scholarship in our field. Hopefully the start of 2017 has afforded you the opportunity to reflect on what you value and the year provides you the opportunity to achieve your goals. Speaking of goals, let’s kick the year off with an attainable one. Ever wanted to attend a regional conference? Ever dreamed of connecting with incredible professionals from your region? Ever wanted to visit Little Rock, Arkansas? Well, if you have (or if you want to now that I have questioned you about it) you are in luck! Our annual conference is right around the corner! The conference is a great way to get involved in our association and learn from your peers. Hopefully we will see you there!

Book drive at the Conference Re-Home your books! At the conference this year the DSJ Committee will be highlighting the work that Arkansas is doing in regards to literacy. The state of Arkansas and the Little Rock community are engaged in some incredible work that strives to improve the literacy rates in their state. Literacy Action of Central Arkansas (www.literacyactionar. org), The Arkansas Literacy Council (www.arkansasliteracy. org), and the Center for Literacy at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock (

are just a few of the groups we will highlight who work to address the need for improved literacy in their areas. Keeping in step with this theme our committee will be hosting a book drive at the conference. Fiction, Non Fiction, Text Books, Reference Books, if it has pages and you want to find a new home for it we will take it off your hands and help free up some space in your office or home, and maybe help you realize some of those resolutions in the process. See you real soon!

Patrick Miller Residence Director, Arlington Hall The University of Texas at Arlington Diversity and Social Justice Committee Chair



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Winter Floods – When the halls are closed and no one Finals were over, the majority of our students have left the Residence Halls to enjoy a welldeserved break from their college experience. While the majority of the campus experienced a break from the normal hustle and bustle of a college semester, University Student Housing Facilities was geared up for the unexpected or expected depending on how you choose to look at it. Every institution should have preventative maintenance measures in place to deal with changes in weather. What does your institution do to prepare for those changes? If you are unsure, I would suggest that you consult with your facilities department. Failure to have something in place could result in financial impacts to

the department/institution; image, trust, and morale problems from your students/staff; and additional work for many staff within facilities and other areas within a housing program, such as: Business, Residence Life, Information Technology, Marketing. During the winter break at Texas Tech University, we experienced a couple of incidents that could have been prevented with two very important tasks: preventative maintenance (PM) and follow up. The fire sprinklers in the attic of one of our residence halls froze. In another residence hall a coil froze also due to the outside air temperature in the attic. Both of these events happened after the majority of students and staff had

left for the winter break. As a result, our housing facilities department and our university physical plant put our heads together to find solutions to reduce the likelihood of these incidents reoccuring in the future. Questions that came out of those conversations were: • Did we check our air handlers? • Did we drain the condensate lines? • Do we have dips in the pipes that may collect standing water? • Are heaters operational in the attics?

Drew Jahr Assistant Director Facilities & Operations University Student Housing Texas Tech University


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

is home: Lessons learned • Are dampers/vents closed completely? • Is water flowing through the pipes? While it is understandable that anything can and will happen, it is important to do as much PM prior to the winter months to help prevent these types of incidents from happening. Another topic that could be another completely different article, is the relationships/responsibilities between housing facilities and physical plant in the area of PM. Our housing facilities team has questioned whether we are responsible for the maintenance for weather preparedness or does that fall into our physical plant’s responsibilities. In order to gain control and insure

that the PM has been done to our satisfaction, we believe we should be doing it ourselves. If not, we want to have something in place to ensure that all we want done has been done completely and to our satisfaction. There are pluses and minuses to both of these directions. The key factors most often come down to expertise, time and money. The lesson learned in our case was to not wait until the weather gets cold enough to freeze to check all of our attic spaces, air handlers, pipes, and etc. We need to make sure a PM work order is generated prior to the winter season to check those areas by submitting the necessary work orders to the physical plant or internal departments. Follow-up is critical to ensure the work has been done.

We have also begun research to see what it would take to heat our attic spaces effectively and possibly create a future improvement project. Failures are inevitable in our business; some are within our control and others are not. Either way it is important to take a step back and learn from situations. Take the opportunity to prevent them from happening in the future. That is what true leadership and professionalism is all about. At Texas Tech University we are doing just that and I could not be prouder of our staff in all areas (Housing Facilities and Residence Life) for handling some difficult situations with leadership and professionalism.



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Hello SWACUHO Region! This past October, I was blessed by our region with a Conference Registration scholarship. I have to first thank the members of the selection committee for selecting me for this award. It was an honor to serve our region and to be able to attend a professional conference.

Haley Hensley Assistant Director of Greek Life Residence Hall Director Southern Arkansas University

With the scholarship, I was able to attend the 2016 ACUHO-I Business Operations Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona. Not only was I able to just attend the conference, I was also a presenter for the very first time and was also able to fulfill my duties as a part of the Business Operations Conference program committee. It was a week of growth, networking, round table discussions and learning about what others in the nation are doing in our Biz/Ops world. My first professional position was at Arizona State University in Mesa, Arizona. By attending the conference, I was also able to connect with old colleagues and find out more about how the institution is growing and developing. Several presentations were given by members of the ASU community. These men and women really gave me even more insight into small processes and procedures that I could take back to my own institution and scale down for our students.


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

As previously stated, I also presented at the conference for new professionals. My presentation focused on how to stay connected with students from behind the desk. I know, from my own experience in the business/operations world, that a lot of our student interactions come from the digital realm. Learning how to communicate effectively with students in that way can be difficult at times. Throughout my presentation, I was able to share with others my

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

personal experience and how I stayed connected with students even during times when we were slammed busy with assignments, meal plans and up to our ears in paperwork. My business/ operations experience taught me so much about our field in student affairs and how we contribute directly to the student experience. Even if you are not in the business/ operations area of your own department, I would like to close by encouraging you to sit in with

those people and see what they do during a normal day. Fielding student complaints and room changes are not only completed by those in the Residential Education side of our departments, our business/operations professionals see these issues as well and have to work in a different way to solve those problems. ACUHO-I is a wonderful organization to volunteer for as well. Find a committee, volunteer at a conference or even just go as an

attendee and get involved. Again, I am so thankful for this opportunity and I can’t wait to see more of you at our next year’s conference. Sincerely, Haley Hensley



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Brownies! Hot Dogs! Service! connected to their committee theme, and coordinates at least one local community service project monthly.

We’d likely all agree that we are here to serve our students. We provide a safe place for students to sleep, to meet new people, and to explore personal identities. We support students academically by fostering quiet study spaces, providing tutoring, and facilitating faculty/student interactions. We also work in many ways to prepare students for entry into their after college lives. In 2010 we conducted some assessment of current and former students and discovered that our residence hall students were looking for more group opportunities to volunteer within the larger community in ways that supported their majors. From those focus

groups and surveys, Raiders Helping Others was born. Now, RHO operates as a registered student organization under the University Student Housing umbrella; providing over 50 volunteer opportunities exclusively for residence hall students each academic year. Striving to be more intentional, the most recent evolution of the group led to the creation of committees that correspond with specific learning communities. Each committee, led by a student officer, plans two fundraising events per year (generating money or resources for local non-profits), sponsors guest speakers to educate residents about social justice issues


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

Since the creation of the group, a hallmark of RHO involvement has been the opportunity for residence hall students to participate in an Alternative Spring Break trip. This year, we’ll be sending approximately ten individuals to four different sites across the US for a week of service. While many campuses offer Alternative Break programs, the opportunity to provide trips specifically to residence hall students allows us to further support students in connection with their learning communities. Now, a student living in the Future Teachers Learning Community can live with fellow education majors, can attend classes with their neighbors, can participate in focused study groups in their hall, can serve as an afterschool tutor at the Boys and Girls club through RHO, and can spend spring break co-teaching classes at The David School in Kentucky. One of the most significant challenges in managing an Alternative Breaks program is budget. University Student Housing allocates $1 per resident, per semester toward RHO operations. The group also participates in the OCM care package program to generate additional revenue.

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers

Additionally, student participants on an ASB trip team are expected to pay for their travel expenses which range from $400 to $1100 depending on the trip. From there, we present the students with a number of fundraising opportunities to help bring their out of pocket expenses down. Fundraising events often include letter writing or crowd-source funding sites, restaurant giveback nights, and penny wars competitions. Not surprisingly, our most successful fund raisers often involve food. Several years ago we began a Super Bowl Hot Dog Blitz event where students can call the ‘Hot Dog Hotline’ and have hot dogs, chips, and drinks delivered to their rooms during the Super Bowl. Playing off of that success, this year we decided to celebrate National Brownie Day by selling gourmet brownies and hot chocolate in each hall. The leftovers were then placed in the Housing break room, where staff members eagerly gobbled up the snacks and donated to support RHO. From the very beginning it’s been important to me that we are developing a culture of service, and not just providing opportunities for one-time engagement. To accomplish this, income received from our OCM Care Package sales is placed into a ‘scholarship’ account. Students

then receive a discount on their trip based on the number of local service hours they perform between August and February. So, students that volunteer 45 hours locally before the trips can receive a 40% reduction in the cost of their trip. Between the trip ‘scholarships’ and other fundraising efforts, students typically only pay approximately 50% of the listed trip cost. RHO has proven to be a winwin- win situation. Students now have an opportunity to engage in educationally purposeful service, we have an opportunity to infuse various social justice discussions into debriefing meetings, and local non-profit agencies have benefited from roughly 3000 hours of service each year.

Craig Kuehnert Assistant Director for Student Leadership Development Texas Tech University - University Student Housing {31


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Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers


2017 Conference: Rock Solid!

Pre conference swacuho 2017 final  

Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers Newsletter

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