On Campus HD FAQ
Common questions answered by our Hall Directors
Questions for Chelsea
What is Onboarding at TCU?
When you arrive to begin your job at TCU, we ensure that you are in good hands! Someone will be there to greet you as you move into your apartment, and you will be provided with all the information you need to get settled in comfortably. Once you officially start the position, we’ll onboard you through the Human Resources process. Once all of the logistics are taken care of, you’ll go through an extensive training program which will thoroughly equip you for your job as a Hall Director. Before you know it, your onboarding check list will be complete and you’ll be ready to rock!
What does HRL staff do for fun?
Anything and everything! We spend a lot of time together as Hall Directors. From going to the movies, taking a trip to the zoo, checking out local happy hours, or hanging out at one of the very many brunch spots in Fort Worth, there is always something to do. And there’s truly something to do for everyone! The coolest thing about Fort Worth is that there are different pockets of places you can visit. Do you want a calm night out? Check out Magnolia Street. Interested in exploring night life? West 7th or Sundance Square are your places to be. Or maybe you want the true country experience – in which case you can explore the Stock Yards. No matter what your mood is, there is something for you and your team of Hall Directors to do!
Questions for KP
What are some unique programs that we as HDs have coordinated and how has that impacted students?
One unique program that I have been able to help with as a Hall Director is Dialog Dinner. This program is designed to help facilitate dialog between students that is open and honest. We want to encourage students to say what they believe even if it causes disagreement so that we can teach them how to disagree with civility. We have this conversations in small groups over dinner. We want to create a familial atmosphere where students feel empowered to share their thoughts while we are there to help guide those disagreements with care and kindness. It has been incredible to hear students discuss controversial topics and disagree with their peers while maintaining a great level of care. The focus we place on relationships at TCU creates an environment where students truly desire to build successful relationships. I appreciate that I am able to help bring these students to the table to build relationships with people who are different than they are. Once you get to campus make sure to ask some of the HDs about the unique programs they have put on over the years.
How does TCU define success and how do you contribute to that success?
I think TCU allows us to define success in our own way. Success for me looks very different than it does for even the HD in a community that is the mirror image of mine. We are allowed so much autonomy in our position that it would be unfair to only have one standard or determination of what success is or looks like. What is important to our department is that we are caring for students, we are creating relationships with students, and that we are providing the resources that they need to be successful. What we desire most is to provide students with an excellent and holistic college experience. We want to help them understand the importance of living out the TCU mission statement. We are committed to educating ethical leaders and responsible citizens. When we are fully invested in that mission statement then I think our department would consider that a success.
Questions for Imani
With so much autonomy, what opportunities are there to share professional strategies with fellow HRL staff?
There are a ton of opportunities for us to share strategies here. Actually, it is something we often recommend to happen. You will often hear people offer up ways they have completed task in their halls in years past. While we are autonomous we are a very collaborative and caring department. We make sure that we are setting each other up for success. As an example we created a folder on our shared drive where people could drop documents on how they have done things in their building in case anyone was searching for a new way to do it or for our new people, doing it for the first time. There is no reason you won’t know a few ways to do the same things unless you don’t ask.
HDs are only allowed fish as pets (unless for special circumstance). However, 3 Leadership Team members have dogs/puppies and are always lettings HDs visit to get their ‘puppy fix’. Also, the zoo is 5 minutes from campus if you would like to see more animals than just pups! Membership is $52 a year and you can go as much as you’d like.
How is assessment implemented within the department and how does it inform everyday practices?
The Assessment committee works with all other committees at their request to help assess processes (ie. Staff selection, trainings, etc.). Over the summer and fall TCU underwent an internal and external review and now works with the other strategic plan pillars to assess target areas to track success or growth. As an example HD duty has moved online so that HRL and FSL can use the data to identify patterns and trends or to make informed decisions when it comes to adjusting duty protocol.
Questions for Cedric
How would we describe the department?
I would describe the department in the following ways: supportive, relationship driven, and family. The department is supportive in so many ways. They support your goals as a professional. At our retreat we had the chance to dive deep into the things that get us fired up every day, and our supervisors make it a point to discuss that in our 1:1s. My supervisor specifically has kept those goals in mind when new opportunities come up around campus. The department runs on relationships. Whether that is a relationship with your co-workers, students, or Leadership Team. We make it a point to get to know each other on a personal level (not invasive haha!) so that we are able to understand how we fit together as a team. I say family as well, because this department truly has become my family. I moved from Mississippi, and the other Hall Directors are like the brothers and sisters I never knew I needed. They support me in my personal endeavors, and have made sure that this transition was as smooth as possible. You get that from most everyone in the department as well!
What are some challenges TCU students face and how are you able to help them?
One of the biggest challenges I have noticed is students over-committing themselves. TCU students are some of the most connected students, but in that same vain they can stretch themselves too thin with classes, extracurricular involvement, and person/social life. That has given me the opportunity to have intentional conversations about time management and what is really important to them. Those conversation snowball into other things, so it’s definitely an opportunity to know them on a deeper level!
Questions for Katy
Hardest part of being an HD?
The hardest part to me is balancing the varying commitments that all pull for our time. I am in this job because I love building relationships with people, and I would spend all of my time with RAs and residents if I wasn’t careful. However, we also have the opportunity to serve the department on several committees, through projects, and performing administrative tasks, so I want to make sure I am doing my best in all of these areas. The hardest part for me is prioritizing all of the great things we get to be a part of while also building intentional relationships with residents.
How have you been able to bring your personality to campus and the position?
Something I appreciate about TCU is the autonomy we have in each of our halls. Yes, there are certain departmental expectations we must meet, but we get to decide how we supervise our staff, what programming we bring to the hall, and ways we connect with residents. I love the outdoors and I love hosting people, so I have been able to use both of those to connect with residents. I have an outdoor program series that involves a monthly excursion. We’ve gone paddle boarding, hiking, kayaking, ice skating, and disc golfing. I also enjoy hosting my residents for open houses in my apartment and my RAs for staff meetings and staff bonding. Both of these things bring me a lot of joy, and I am happy to be able to bring them into my work.