“Your Neighbour was a different learning experience. We got to learn about the importance of Ryerson’s values and the fact that they’re essential in any community. It’s one thing to learn about values through theory, but going out, meeting different people and seeing the positive influence you can have on the community and what they can have on you is a great way to round off our August Training program and learn the true meaning of these values and what this means for community.”
– Mohamed El Abshihy, Residence Advisor, ILLC
On August 27th, 2015, Ryerson Housing & Residence Life student leaders participated in a day-long learning experience called Your Neighbour, focused on Ryerson’s values from the university’s Academic Plan.
In order to do this, intentional curriculum was developed through the following learning outcomes, which were also used to provide framework and assess this learning experience. By participating in Your Neighbour, student leaders from Housing & Residence Life will be able to…
- explore and critically examine how their intersecting identities (i.e.: student, community member of residence/Ryerson/Toronto, first-generation learner, gender/sex, etc.) are impacted by Ryerson’s values through personal and group reflection activities. (ANALYSIS*)
- demonstrate and describe how Ryerson is building a culture of community engagement and philanthropy through group discussions with the partner organization. (COMPREHENSION*)
- apply one value connected to the academic plan by integrating Ryerson’s definition of this value to their own experience from their off-campus visit through a culminating group presentation. (APPLICATION*)
- manage an on-going community resource list, by area team, that includes existing community resources on-campus (i.e.: Tri-Mentoring program and Ambassador program) and organizations off-campus (not limited to those spaces visited) to refer to students interested or in-need of support, or through a support and action plan. (SYNTHESIS*)
*NOTE: Learning Outcomes were guided by Bloom’s Taxonomy.
Groups were divided early in the summer, allowing participants to express their own interest in learning more about each specific value. The groups were also intentionally divided to mix leadership positions and experience to invite cross-positional learning opportunities. This was advantageous to look at from an assessment standpoint, as each student-leader’s position has a different connection to each of the values described in the academic plan; therefore, cross-positional learning opportunities allows for each person and position to provide new and different context for their own and their group’s development. This also directly connected to our first learning outcome, focused on analysis…
To read more about the Your Neighbour program, including its design, how the day worked, the results of its assessment, and feedback from participants, please visit www.RyersonStudentAffairs.com for the full article.
…The Your Neighbour experience continues to echo in our residence halls. We have referred to it beyond our training program, heard even more about it from our student leaders, and some student leaders have begun to develop their own experiences off campus to share with their communities. Our hope, and the next phase in the winter, is that Your Neighbour evolves into smaller community projects in and outside of residence that will further all of our students’ out of classroom experience, and influence a culture of philanthropy with the understanding of our values—that we are members of the residence, Ryerson, and Toronto communities.
The next incarnation of Your Neighbour, however, will include all of our LLC students participating in an experience similar to the August 2015 program with the Residence Life Team, that begins their year off integrating into the new communities they are a part of in residence, at Ryerson, and in Toronto, before all of our students move into residence August 28, 2016.
If you have any further questions about our Your Neighbour program, please don’t hesitate to contact us!
Originally published at RyersonStudentAffairs.com.
This post is part of our #SAassess series on the importance of assessment in student affairs as a state of mind. A variety of knowledgeable and relatable perspectives will be portrayed throughout the month of November. We hope you will gain inspiring insights and take time to reflect on how you make meaning of your data collection and assessment practices. For more information, check out the intro post by Kim Irland. Be sure to read the other posts in this series too!
> BONUS <
Podcast With Lisa Endersby on Assessment in Student Affairs