Mission Statement

Philosophy Statement

The Office of Housing & Residence Life exists to serve the students of the University by providing them with a living environment conducive to academic achievement, makes manifest our Student Affairs orientation, and is in keeping with the overall Mission of the University. It does so in concert with a number of other departments and agencies, and as such strives to foster and encourage a unified effort dedicated to the safe, respectful, and educational experience of each community member.

We believe that in many direct and indirect ways we contribute to the development of character, along with traits such as a sense of responsibility to neighbors and community. We strive to provide connections with the main core values of the University through our programming efforts, and direct connections with campus and campus culture are made easily during two years of living in a large and vibrant on campus residential program. We also provide numerous student leadership opportunities in each of our residences and a nurturing and responsive environment. It is through these methods that we firmly believe our impact on students who live with us is visible in very positive ways when the student is ready to move out to the larger world in greater Spokane or elsewhere.

Department Mission Statement

The Department of Housing and Residence Life provides management, resources, and systems which allow for the support of Gonzaga University's mission and academic endeavors. Working in concert with a number of other departments, we strive to provide well maintained facilities, modestly appointed, wherein students can come together on common ground to develop community among themselves, through which the mission of the University can develop and have an impact on the individual. Our work will be guided by industry best practices, professional ethics, values and knowledge, with fervent loyalty and devotion to the appropriate use of these in the context of the mission and values of Gonzaga University.

Mission Support Goals
  1. The Central Office staff will provide direction for the university while providing delivery systems regarding the administration of housing services, accounting, marketing, and information management. They will enhance departmental image through successful and positive student, staff, and public interactions regarding department business. As communication agents, the office staff will work to be the coordinating link between the department and other institutional offices in furthering residential services to all GU students.

  2. The professional staff will create, implement, evaluate, and report on long and short range planning for the residence life portion of the department. Coming from thorough experiential and educational backgrounds, the professional staff will model behavior and attitudes which contribute to both the success of the department and also the furtherance of the university's mission. While systematically upgrading professional and personal skills, the professional will step up at critical times to take leadership in representing the department well to any and all constituencies, external and internal. The professional will design and implement training, systems and management objectives for the care, development, and supervision of the department's human resources. This staff will be thorough in the use of the university mission as a guide for the development and sustenance of the residential community.

  3. The paraprofessional staff will reflect the profile and needs of the student population and work to respond to the residence life "program" goals. The Residence Directors will come together as a management team to work collaboratively in the management of the people and facilities, program and activities of a vibrant residential community comprising quite distinct sub communities. The Resident Assistant staff will contribute to the accomplishment of the educational mission through intentional and situational student interaction, programs, advisement and referral, administration, role modeling, and appropriate interventions into behaviors and community issues which threaten to run contrary to established community expectations. It is expected that the R.A. staff will visibly support residence life objectives while engaging the needed resources on behalf of student satisfaction and develop. Program Assistant paraprofessionals will work collaboratively to provide after hours programming for periods of time when organized student activities are few and student free time is high. These programs will provide a Gonzaga Community- wide focus aimed at developing healthy and safe use of free time as an important adult skill. ment. Together, all paraprofessional staff will work tirelessly with a restless sense of dedication to the community and GU and in visible support of each other and the department and its goals.

  4. Live in professional and paraprofessional staff will work diligently to assure the residential facilities receive adequate, predictable and professional cleaning, maintenance, and repair as necessary. Daily attention to facility upkeep will be a goal as they strive to develop a healthy partnership with the personnel in the Department of Plant and Construction Services characterized by caring, respect and understanding. Normal and abnormal wear and tear will be reported in timely fashion to appropriate entities directly responsible for attending to these issues. Each act of vandalism will be actively investigated by the residence life staff and appropriate measures will be used to assure the collection of funds for the repairs indicated. Professional live in staff will provide regular review of facilities under their direction as it pertains to maintaining public areas.

  5. Judicial agents will work tirelessly in assisting the university in intervening in behaviors and attitudes which threaten established GU standards of conduct. Such interventions will be both at an individual level and community level when indicated. Timely personal followup intervention will be aimed at assessing individual culpability, learning needs and attitudes and designing an intervention package with a goal of helping the individual or community learn and grow from the experience of reflecting on the behavior or attitude. Adequate avenues for student involvement in behaviors threatening to people, community or standards of conduct will be implemented at the beginning of each year. Best practices will be regularly studied, and when appropriate, implemented in response to this area of work.

  6. The human resources of the department will be considered the highest value of all resources available to the department. Systems, training, and support will be designed in ways that strengthen both the individual and the larger team. Focus will be both on skill acquisition/development and membershipping in appropriate teams for mutual support and understanding. All department professionals will be available 24/7 to paraprofessional staff for on call support, guidance and crisis management needs. In all instances of employee corrective intervention "cura personalis" will be the guiding principle of the interaction.

  7. The department will provide multiple avenues for resident participation in residential management issues and initiatives. Such initiatives will be considered of paramount value. Systems will be designed and stewarded with this value in mind. Residence Hall Association, student conduct boards, student committees, Residence Hall Councils, student employment opportunities and recruitment of resident participation in program review and selection of department professionals are examples of department systems which allow for such resident input. Best practices for the nurturance of these kinds of systems will receive thorough application.

  8. Above all things, work with residents will be based in the belief that Christ is present and at work attempting to reach our students both in class and at home, where they are in life. Appropriate attempts will be made to develop avenues for this work to flourish. The Chaplain program will be an important partnership toward this end, as will be program focus through residence life initiatives aimed at spiritual education and enlightenment. Students shall live in environments which not only freely allow faith expression, but nurture such.

  9. When designing the programmatic interface with residential communities, the professional will allow for the following key concepts of the university mission to be a guide and influence in program requirements and evaluation efforts:

    1. Ignatian: education of the whole person- mind, body, spirit- an integration of science and art, faith and reason, action and contemplation.

    2. Jesuit: inspiring students to see Christ at work in the world, transforming it by His love and calling men and women to work with Him in service to the human community

    3. Catholic: theological reflection and liturgical worship

    4. Humanistic: empowering and motivating human creativity, intelligence, and initiative in construction of society, culture and communities

    5. Thirst: for knowledge of traditions and culture different from our own

    6. Reflection: upon the rights and responsibilities that come from commitment to a free society. The development and discipline of imagination, intelligence, and moral judgment.

  10. In an atmosphere of loyalty and devotion to Gonzaga University and all it means, the department will be attentive to the guidelines for the housing professional espoused in the ethical standards of the Association of College and University Housing Officers International. The Department will be inclusive of the suggestions of the CAS Standards and Guidelines for housing and residential life programs as it strives for continual program review and improvement.