The heart of the Baylor experience rests in the communion of ideas, experiences and relationships on campus. To facilitate and energize campus life, Baylor will seek to make more desirable residence halls available so that at least 50 percent of Baylor undergraduates are living on campus by 2012. Further, we will develop walking malls along the axes of campus to enhance the total social and relational environment. To complement the physical design of the campus, Baylor will create robust student life programming to enrich the life of the University and to cultivate social skills, leadership and physical fitness; therefore, a full array of opportunities for students to develop lifelong friendships will exist.
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- Improve Residential Facilities
North Village and Brooks Village have been constructed during the tenure of Baylor 2012. Ten living-learning programs have been implemented. The faculty-in-residence program was initiated and has since grown to 10 faculty members residing in apartments within the residential communities. A faculty partner program has been implemented that engages 60 additional faculty within the residential communities. In addition, current residential facilities have undergone significant renovations, such as Kokernot Residence Hall and the restoration of the Memorial Chapel. At its annual Homecoming meeting in 2011, the Baylor University Board of Regents approved capital improvements, including construction that will be financed through the issuance of bonds for a new 700-bed residential complex and dining facility on the east side of campus to open in fall 2013. Further, students will have a new option for living on campus beginning in August 2012. The University Parks apartment community officially becomes part of the Campus Living & Learning operation over the summer, affording students yet another opportunity to live on campus throughout their Baylor career.
- Increase Number of Undergraduates Living on Campus
The number and percentage of undergraduates living on campus declined between fall 2010 and fall 2011 due to increased enrollment and decreased housing capacity. As of fiscal year 2011, the total standard capacity is 4,550 beds. (Maximum capacity of 4,745 beds includes expanded occupancy beds.) Overall capacity was reduced by 68 bed spaces between fall 2010 and fall 2011 due to units being taken offline for maintenance or construction purposes and units being re-purposed to house two residents instead of four. Total fall occupancy of 4,472, represents 35.6 percent of the total undergraduate population (12,575).
- Enhance the Social and Relational Environment
Furnishings in the Bill Daniel Student Center continue to be updated to provide inviting spaces for students. Refurbishment in the Den created additional spaces for student gatherings, student performances, internet access and new dining options. The Baylor Activities Council, Department of Student Activities, Kappa Omega Tau Fraternity, Baylor Religious Hour Choir and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., demonstrate the spirit of the season in their collaboration in presenting expanded activities for Christmas on 5th – an event that presents a live nativity, Christmas Tree Lighting, Christmas Marketplace, cocoa and cookies, carols, New Anthems for an Old Story, Kids' Creation Station, carriage rides, a petting zoo, pictures with Santa, live concerts by campus organizations and national performers and thematic tree displays through the Bill Daniel Student Center. Immediately after the celebration, Barfield Drawing Room is returned to its original design as a living room where students can retreat for quiet study in preparation for finals.
An area between Rena Marrs McLean Gymnasium and Marrs McLean Science Building was redeveloped during summer 2011 and became the home for the National Pan-Hellenic Council Garden. Dedicated in fall 2011, the garden honors the history and heritage of African-American fraternities and sororities. It includes seven monuments honoring the seven Baylor chapters of the Council's “Divine Nine” international Greek letter sororities and fraternities.
Baylor traditions of education and enrichment are featured elements of Baylor Line Camps and common spaces on campus continue to be made more appealing. In partnership with Academic Affairs, University 1000 has been redesigned to help nurture all students as they transition from high school to college life or as they move into the Baylor community from another college setting. After the success of a pilot study in 2010, Baylor Greeters, who provide an initial contact with each incoming student during the summer months, are encouraged to serve as the facilitator for the same group throughout University/BU 1000 groups.