When Junior Architecture major Lauren Romeo began working as a peer mentor for Tyler’s Living Learning Community at Peabody Hall, she found a stong communal bond between the residents.
The LLC gives residents exposure to the art that can be found on Temple’s campus and the surrounding Philadelphia area while also increasing interaction between Tyler staff and students.
“Its more of a chance to adjust quicker and learn from people different than them,” Romeo said, “They have things in common but are still different and they are in great hands at the LLC.”
With common classes and activities, the LLC creates a forum for residents to connect with each other.
“We do critiques or indoor art projects to have them get to know each other, I just like to hang out with them,” Romeo said, “It’s us hanging out, but it’s also educational in disguise.”
Oftentimes, their monthly events and meetings are combined with other Living Learning Communities on Temple’s campus. Sometimes including watching movies together and doing tye-die projects.
“[Coming up] we are having a joint program with other LLC’s about relationships, then we are doing a Philly Mural Tour. We’ll go and see how they are painted and just look at how good they are,” Romeo said.
Two years ago, the LLC only had two mentors that were accessible to residents. Now, there are twelve mentors for the residents to go to with any questions they may have.
“I believe I was hired because I have the same lifestyle and I am experienced with the stress that they go through, especially with projects that sometimes take forever,” Romeo said, “It really has to be somebody in the same boat.”
With this expansion, mentors are learning how to do their job better and how to appeal to the residents in different ways.
“I love that they’re so creative, I try to encourage them. Creativity is not something that only a few people have, they just have to figure out how to work it,” Romeo said.
Romeo’s role is to help freshmen with their transition into college and to offer advice.
“I try to teach them how to figure things out instead of asking for help, that there is no one way to do things, sometimes you have to keep trying before you get it right, and managing time,” Romeo said.
She also encourages residents to take time and walk away from projects if they feel a block.
“I tell them to work, not harder, but smarter,” Romeo said.
While being in a smaller community might be harder to work around, Romeo feels that it actually benefits the LLC.
“It’s easier to get to know people,” Romeo said, “The LLC residents are all very accepting of each other. “
To learn more about Tyler’s Living Learning Community at Peabody Hall, visit http://www.temple.edu/studentaffairs/housing/living-learning-communities/Tyler-LLC.asp