Kicking off a new year with the Don's at St. Paul’s Residence

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

 students attending pj floorGoing into the 2021/2022 school year, St. Paul’s welcomed a full residence. With the exciting news of a full residence, St. Paul’s also brought in 14 Dons and 16 Peer Leaders. Residence Dons are immersed in student floors, available to support their students, plan socials and create a welcoming and inclusive environment for all. This year has been no exception; there have been events happening in St. Paul’s common spaces nearly every day since the Fall term began.

Dons have excellent student knowledge, as they are also students themselves. They are very familiar with the habits that students often get into when things are very busy at school. Dons remind students to eat regular and healthy meals, take breaks from studying, and venture out of their rooms to socialize with other students.  

Dons make these small tasks more readily available to students so that students don't need to put thought into making it happen for themselves. At St. Paul's, each floor's Don is responsible for running a club and creating a vibrant social setting in the community. Some of the clubs and socials that are available to students are the GreenTeam, yoga club, art club, tutoring sessions, floor dinners and movie nights.students participating in seed paper making

By listening to students, Dons aim to plan programming that is meaningful and reflects students' interests. Two St. Paul's Dons, Bethany and Jess, who are co-chairing the GreenTeam this term bring lots of passion to their club. St. Paul's has strong ties to the Faculty of Environment, so it doesn't come as much of a surprise that students are interested in green initiatives and activities about sustainability.

So far this year, GreenTeam has gathered bi-weekly to host viewing parties of a recent docuseries, Down to Earth with Zac Efron. They also hosted a seed planting workshop so that students would be able to grow small plants in their rooms throughout the term, and most recently they provided a seed paper-making workshop.

The Dons have also gone above and beyond with their floors to plan themed dinners in Watson’s Eatery, weekly tv show nights on their floors, special walks through popular areas in Waterloo and field trips to exciting exhibits in the region. Students, Dons and staff alike have noticed the vibrant energy that has been occupying St. Paul’s over the last two months and there is only more to come! Even though Covid-19 rules and guidelines need to be followed, there is still so much that can be done while living in residence. Each day the student experience is returning to a more normal experience.

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