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New College Don System Working Well

Almost one month into the 2002/03 year, Otonabee College Don Leanne Rose is pleased with how the new donning system is working out.

"I don't think it could be working any better," says Ms. Rose.

The major change in donning at Trent is that there is now one central adult don at each residential college, instead of several. The top positions are now filled by a full-time employee of the University, which means the college dons are working in their position at all times. Previously residential dons lived on campus but usually worked full-time in other jobs.

At each college, student dons work under the leadership of the college don, and there are now University-wide standards for their duties. "This year the dons completed an eight-day training program and the cohesion has been terrific. With the new discipline system that has also been implemented, there is a sense that certain expectations are consistent throughout the University," explains Ms. Rose. "Now they hear one voice, where before it could have been different with each don."

Trent dons help new students adjust to university life and assist all students in many other ways. They also help to create a sense of community in their residential college. The five college dons fill the role of addressing major needs and issues, and of providing a more mature perspective for students seeking advice and direction.

Ms. Rose and her husband, Doug, were dons at Otonabee College last year, under the old Trent system, and enjoy living on campus. "Both my husband and I love university students and their energy. It's a dynamic age and being in this environment is fun," she says.

Photo: Otonabee College Don Leanne Rose and her golden lab Pocket love campus life at Trent. Ms. Rose's husband, Doug, also lives at Otonabee.

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Last updated October 24, 2002