Taking Residence

Although commuter students are eligible to participate, the FDU’s Global Scholars Program is designed especially for residents. “We wanted a diverse mix of freshmen and upperclassmen, American and international students to live and learn in a residential facility with a warm atmosphere,” explains Jonell Sanchez, associate dean of students on the Metropolitan Campus, adding that one of the program’s main benefits is encouraging a rich dialogue among people from different backgrounds.

Through an application process that included an essay describing their desire to engage in global experiences, 22 students were chosen to participate in the program this first year. Almost half are American students and the rest are from abroad. Sixteen of the students live on campus. “We have scholars studying subjects from pre-med to political science and everything in between. Global topics cut across all areas of study,” says Sanchez.

University Court 4 residence hall was selected to house the on-campus Global Scholars. “We wanted an environment conducive to significant interaction,” says Sanchez. “University Court 4 is the only hall that has a computer and a desk in the common area. Also, that building is co-ed and houses many international students; some Global Scholars are serving as resident assistants as well,” Sanchez adds.

The Global Scholars are enthusiastic about the arrangements. “We have a special bond — like a family — and we all get along,” says Laura Righter, who also is president of the Freshman Class Council. “The living arrangements have facilitated friendships with fellow scholars. It’s the icing on the cake.”

“There is a closeness that allows us to develop a solid relationship with each other,” says freshman Global Scholar Dora Argueta, a native of El Salvador.

Michael Richtmyer, a fellow scholar and vice president of the Freshmen Class Council, adds, “I find our living arrangement an added bonus. Each person is unique and comes from a different background. There is a real camaraderie among us, and we all push each other to take that extra step in furthering study and research.”

Commuters also benefit. Having all of the Global Scholars housed together provides a self-described “safe ground” for Louise Lynch, who is a commuting Global Scholar and biology major. “I am able to pop in and visit everyone anytime. It’s a good set-up for support.”

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