Neighbor Knowledge

March 29, 2006
After dreaming big for more than a year, Laine Scales, associate dean of graduate studies and professional development, finally found a solution to graduate students' need for more housing and community at the Quadrangle apartments, near the intersection of Fifth and Daughtrey streets.
The 44 allocated apartments are two bedroom- and two bath-units with water, trash, Internet and cable included in rent -- all within walking distance of campus.
Scales and Bracy Hill, the community coordinator at the housing community, have reached out to graduate students, including those at George W. Truett Theological Seminary and the School of Social Work. The apartments also provide housing for married graduate students with children and pets.
Several Baylor faculty members also have agreed to live in the complex, providing an interesting dynamic to the area, says Hill, who is pursuing his PhD in historical religion. "What we envision is to allow people with family, children and pets to live right next to singles and people in all walks of life," he says
"Grad students come from diverse backgrounds; they have many different concerns, and they are at many different places in their lives," Hill says. "So, my job is simply to bring them together, and to be ... the 'hub' of the community. Whatever that requires, that's what I'm going to have to figure out and do."
Hill and Scales already are planning upcoming events, such as informal moving-in parties this summer and a cookout at the beginning of the fall semester. Along with social activities, they are scheduling academic events for students, including interdisciplinary forums and opportunities for them to share professional and academic work.
Hill says he hopes that the housing will provide opportunities for all residents "to get together, talk, see each other and think together. A lot of us don't live with the concept of 'neighbor' anymore, and this is an opportunity to build a community where you can truly know your neighbor. And I think that's very exciting."
For more information on graduate school housing, e-mail Bracy_Hill@baylor.edu.
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