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Current R.A. Resources

Community Development and Programming

Learn more about resources and tools for brainstorming, planning, publicizing, and evaluating your community development initiatives.

  • What’s the purpose of this event?  
    • What am I hoping residents will learn as a result of attending this event?  
    • Does this event meet any of the AMDG programming aims?
  • What resources on campus can I reach out to better inform the content of the event?
  • How will residents feel more a part of the community as a result of attending this event?
    • How will residents learn more about each other at this event?
    • How will residents be involved in the design, planning, or implementation of this event?
    • How will residents know that the community wants them to be at the event?  
    • At the event, how will each resident feel like their involvement is needed for the event to be successful?
    • What shared goal or task will residents be working toward at the event?
    • How will you brand this activity as something special for your community or your area?

Brainstorming Resources

  • Map out an outline of the event and begin delegating tasks.
  • What’s the ideal date and time for the event?  
    • Make sure it’s short enough that people will attend, but long enough that it is still worthwhile. A four hour letter-writing party may be unrealistic and a one hour trip to D.C. seems unproductive.
    • When are my residents most likely to be available for the program? When is the program most needed?
    • Is there anything else happening on campus that night that might conflict with my event? (Check out the Event Services calendar)
  • What’s your ideal number of participants?  
    • More is not always better. It’s difficult to lead a group discussion with more than 20 people.
    • No matter how great your event is, if you try to squeeze 30 people into a living room, it won’t be enjoyable for everyone.
    • Is participation limited by funding, transportation, or space restrictions? Plan accordingly.
  • Which location is most appropriate for the event and which one will encourage the best attendance?
    • Will residents travel to attend this event?
    • Would this program work in a high-traffic area?
    • Do you need a quiet place for discussion?
  • Is the setup of this program perpetuating the exclusion of any marginalized communities on campus?
  • Is the marketing or structure of the event based on the appropriation of another culture?
  • Does this program perpetuate any stereotypes or strip a cultural holiday/practice of its significance?
  • Does participation within this program rely on knowledge of dominant cultural references?
  • Are there ways for residents to participate in this program without contributing their own finances?

Planning and Logistical Resources

  • How are you getting residents excited?
    • Catch their attention with a quick, concise marketing push that peaks their interest while providing the base level information they need.
    • Provide dates, times, and locations along with one or two bold aspects of the event (e.g., interesting title or topic, special guest appearance/speaker, valuable incentive).
    • Get this marketing out at least a week in advance.
  • How do you keep residents excited to come as the event gets closer?
    • What will remind them of the event and ensure that they show up on the day of?
    • Is there additional information or incentives you haven’t yet shared?
    • Is there another marketing medium you can use to catch their attention?
    • If you had folks sign up to attend, how are you reminding them about the event in a way that gets them excited for something they had initial interest in?
    • Consider branding this event with consistent colors, text fonts, designs.
  • How do you keep residents excited about the topic at the event? After the program is over?
    • Your residents saved the date. They were excited enough to come over to the event on the day of. But, they still have to walk through the door.
    • How will residents know they are at the right place?
    • What are the decorations?
    • Who’s greeting residents? How are you encouraging people to stay at your event? What are the decorations? How are incentives passed out? Is the room empty when the first residents arrive?
    • If any residents couldn’t attend, how would they know they missed a good event? Consider posting pictures on the floor of events throughout the year or making sure that residents leave your event with something tangible they can show to those who didn’t attend.
  • Your greatest advertising for future programs is the positive word of mouth from residents who came to your past events.

Additional Publicity Tips

Publicity Tools and Resources

  • Don't forget to enter attendance and your evaluation of your program.
  • Thank residents who attended.
  • What made the program a success? What could you do differently in the future?
  • Don't forget to turn in any receipts for reimbursement.
  • Send thank you notes to any guest speakers or campus partners!

Contact Us

Residence Life & Housing: 410-617-5081

If you or your student are currently experiencing an emergency, please call Campus Police at 410-617-5911. You may also ask to speak to a member of the Residence Life & Housing On-Call Team.