In a Living Learning Community, or LLC, a student shares a living space with fellow students in his or her major or school as a way to encourage stronger relationships among people with common interests.
“You can either have a thematic or an academic LLC,” said Cassie Stanford, peer mentor for the Media and Communications LLC. “It creates a community for like-minded students who live together on the floor.”
Living Learning Communities have recently seen a rise in popularity at Temple.
The Media and Communications LLC experienced a huge increase in membership, growing from 14 to 31 students from last year to this year. Due to such a positive turnout, more Living Learning Communities are expected to come in the future.
“Just this past year we added two more LLCs,” Stanford said. “Since its beginning, the program has grown immensely to the point where we’re in almost every residence hall on campus now, and next year we are looking forward to possibly having another new LLC.”
An LLC is composed of a program administrator from each college who teaches a one-credit freshman seminar. Peer mentors and resident assistants collaborate together for the benefit of the students.
“The resident assistant is in charge of organizing events and making sure that residents are able to cohabitate with one another efficiently and effectively, and are able to grow together,” said Dise Diasonama, RA for the Music and Dance/Theater LLC.
Peer mentors prepare students academically and instruct them in any situation they may need help in.
“You get really close with everyone and it helps you get more involved in the university,” said Shannon Blattner, a resident in the Career Explorations LLC.
Blattner joined an LLC to help her decide on a major.
“You have a weekly seminar and it has definitely helped me pick a major,” Blattner said.
In an LLC, students are also exposed to activities and excursions that happen at the beginning of the year, about a weekend earlier than normal move-in.
“This year, we got to tour Fox 29 studios and new students got to see what a future in media and communications really means,” Blattner said.
“LLCs further encourage others to be part of a bigger community,” said Diasonama, whose LLC in Johnson Hall has approximately 40 members.
“There’s a lot of talent on my floor. There will be five, six, seven students in a room all playing guitar and singing,” he said. “We’ll have students from other floors walking on our floor say, ‘Cool, I want to be in an LLC, I want to be a Peer Mentor, I want to be an RA for the LLC.’”
At the end of the day, LLCs are an extra resource available to students at Temple.
“It’s honestly a great networking opportunity to learn who your program administrator is,” Stanford said. “Your advisor and they can really help you out in the future.”
Written by Maryvic Perez
Photographed by Sarah Whitehead