Our Priorities

We believe that learning is not limited to opening a book or listening to a lecture. We learn from every moment, situation and personal encounter, both inside and outside the classroom. Remember to make the most out of your residence experience—this is your home away from home for the next eight months, so take advantage of all residence has to offer! Read below to learn about our priorities in Housing.

Commitment to Diversity

We're all part of Western's diverse community. Residence Life embraces, appreciates, and celebrates people of all races, nationalities, sexes, ages, gender identities and expressions, affectional and sexual orientations, socioeconomic statuses, spiritual practices, abilities, and any other dimension of personal lifestyle. Society is strengthened by human diversity and the growth fostered by an inclusive community. Every person has equal worth and deserves to be treated with dignity and respect accordingly. 

We work and live together, maintaining an environment of mutual respect, interpersonal curiosity, while striving to have positive interactions with one another. We can learn from one another and gain a greater understanding of and appreciation for our fellow people. 

We're responsible for our actions and our behaviour will model our values: we treat others with respect and we expect them to do the same to us. We don't subscribe to attitudes or actions which hurt or degrade another person because of their race, nationality, sex, age, gender identity and expression, affectional and sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, spiritual practice, ability, or any other reason. Any form of abuse, harassment, threat, or violence is incompatible with our philosophy and will not be tolerated. We don't accept ignorance, anger, alcohol, or substance abuse as a valid excuse, reason, or rationale for negative behaviour. 

It's All About Respect

Living in residence means you have rights; however, you also have responsibilities. It’s essential you respect the rights of your fellow residents, including the rights to privacy, property, study, rest, and equal opportunity to access common facilities. Respecting the rights of others will make them more likely to respect your rights in turn. Residence living requires a spirit of mutual respect and cooperation.

We follow a simple motto: Take care of yourself. Take care of each other. Take care of this place.

This statement helps guide our programs and awareness campaigns throughout the year. We support your transition to University through needs-based and carefully planned initiatives, while also supporting the University's strategic priorities. 

Be an Upstander

Upstander behaviour means taking action when you see another person in harm’s way. If you witness harassment, sexual harassment, assault (or the potential for), intervene indirectly by calling Campus Police, your front desk, Residence Staff, or Equity & Human Rights Services. If it is safe to do so, intervene directly by warning or removing the recipient from the situation, or saying something to the perpetrator. We take care of each other at Western and in residence. If you or someone you know has experienced any of the behaviour listed above, talk to Residence Staff or your Residence Manager.

Learning Goals

We want you to get the most out of your experience at Western—and living in residence is the start of that journey. Residence events and programs are designed with three key learning goals in mind that will teach you how to thrive in university and in life after graduation.  

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Intellectual Engagement: Through interactions with faculty, staff and peers, you will be challenged to think critically, apply knowledge and connect classroom learning to life experiences.

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Citizenship: By living in a community, exploring new cultures and learning more about social issues, you’ll discover and refine your perspective, individuality and impact on society.

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Self-Awareness: Learn to reflect on personal growth and change—whether it be physical, psychological, social or intellectual, and gain the ability to recognize a realistic self-concept relating to confidence, integrity and personal limitations.

Community Development

We work with the goal in mind of developing floor and building communities that have a shared identity, and sense of personal investment from its members. Our Residence Staff follow a community development framework, used to support their residents and develop their floor communities. This community development framework is rooted in research, based on the rhythm of the academic year, and is supportive of the Western student culture.

Residence Staff identify the needs of their community—through ongoing needs assessments—and are addressed through a number of methods, such as connecting individually with students, organizing floor meeting discussions around certain topics, bringing in a campus expert to speak about a shared floor concern, or even organizing an event with an outcome in mind. Residence Staff have the flexibility of addressing needs in a manner that best suits the character of their community. 

If you'd like to learn more about Western's Community Development Model, please contact us at orep@uwo.ca

International Student Programs

One in ten of our residence students considers themselves an international student. The experience of living in a diverse residence community itself provides many opportunities for self-discovery and an appreciation of differing perspectives. Moving away from home for the first time can be scary and intimidating. International students sometimes have additional needs due to culture shock and adjusting to new environments and cultural norms.

The Academic & Leadership Programmers (ALPs) work closely with international and exchange students throughout the year to ensure this group has social opportunities to connect with each other and feel comfortable and acclimatized to their new homes not just at Western, but in Canada.

Mental Health

It is common for students to experience a mental health challenge at some point during their university career. Transitioning away from home for the first time and academic pressures and worries can have a significant impact on a student's emotional and psychological well-being. Asking for help is a normal part of the university experience—it’s what we do. You have a number of built-in supports while living in residence, however connecting your floormates to residence and campus supports is part of living in a community and looking out for each other. 

We promote wellness campaigns throughout the year to ensure you are taking care of yourself through eating, sleeping, staying active and feeling connected with others. Our staff help raise awareness for specific support services on campus and keeps the topic of mental health as part of the campus conversation. Learn more about making a Residence Counselling appointment, and other supports on campus.