The Warren Ashby Residential College at Mary Foust Hall
or simply RC
) is a living-learning community located on the campus of The University of North Carolina at Greensboro
. The college is made up of about 120 students who apply to the program in their senior year of high school.
The Warren Ashby Residential College
was founded in 1970 by Dr. Warren Ashby
and Dr. Robert Miller in collaboration with several university students, faculty and administrators. It was an experimental program --even named "Experimental College" in its first year-- to try to fix the key problem that plagued universities across the country - namely, the lack of integration between a student's social life and their academic life. WARC has been in Mary Foust Residence Hall since the inception of the program.
In September 2007, Residential College at Mary Foust Hall was officially renamed "Warren Ashby Residential College" in honor of its founder. An official renaming ceremony was held on September 29, 2007 at the residence hall.
WARC is made up of about 120 full-time students who all live in the Mary Foust Residence Hall. (In the past, some RCers were housed across College Avenue in Guilford Residence Hall, because of population overflow.)
The program is limited to freshmen and sophomores, but up to twelve upperclass people who have completed the program are allowed to apply to serve as upperclass mentors.
Mirroring the university at large, WARC has had a majority of female members consistently through the years.
Freshmen and sophomores in the program take between six and nine credit hours from special classes offered only to members of the program. These in-dorm classes help students to fulfill University Liberal Education Requirements.
Students are required to take a core course focusing on the American Experience three out of the four semesters that they spend at WARC. The Core class is team taught, and starting in the Spring of 2007, core faculty will rotate between each of the 4 or 5 core seminars.
Other classes offered by WARC are taught by faculty from the University at large, who usually come into WARC to teach a smaller, discussion based section of what is usually a huge lecture course. Examples include classes in Sociology, Psychology, Astronomy, Earth Science, Personal Health, Buddhism, Math 112/115, Masterpieces in Cinema, etc.
(listed chronologically, starting in the Fall semester)
WARC has a separate new student orientation that takes place in the days preceding the University's official move-in day. New WARC students move in on the Wednesday before classes start at UNCG. Up to 25 returning WARC sophomores and upperclass people are selected by the WARC Office to be Orientation Leaders (often referred to simply as "OLs") who help to plan and facilitate the Orientation process. OLs move in to Mary Foust a week before classes start. OLs assist new students at move-in, and plan events to introduce new students to the WARC program, the university, and each other.
The main objective of WARC orientation is that by the time the final orientation event has taken place, the new students feel safe and secure in the program.
Every fall and spring semester, WARC takes a retreat to a conference center in Valle Crucis, North Carolina
in the North Carolina mountains. In the fall, the retreat is limited to just current WARCers and the immediate faculty, but in the spring the retreat is open to alumni of the program as well.
The students in WARC transform their dorm into a haunted house every year. A theme is selected; the dorm is decorated accordingly; and students become actors in the haunted house. Visitors are charged a small fee to "tour" the haunted house. Typically, proceeds are donated to a charity selected by members of the Service Learning Committee.
In addition, it might be noted that this event is often cited as the reason for the dorm's nickname, "Scary Foust".
Rocky Horror Picture Show
Since 1997, WARC students have put on their own personal version of Rocky Horror Picture Show
. Like many midnight movie theater productions, it is staged in front of a live projection of the film, with RCers acting out the entire movie.
The Social Committee's main responsibility every fall semester is to put on RC's own Thanksgiving that takes place the weekend before the University goes on Thanksgiving Break. RC students, staff, alumni, and their family and friends, are all invited to join. The event may have originally taken place in the main parlor of the dorm, and until recently took place at the Alumni House. It now takes place at the Campus Ministries building.
Before exam week begins, it is WARC Tradition to gather in the main parlor of the dorm to celebrate the winter holidays. The name of the event, "WARC Christmas" is not specifically referring to the idea of Christmas as far as Christianity, but rather the idea of Christmas as a time when people come together and celebrate something.
Highlights of WARC Christmas include sharing information about winter holidays and traditions of various religions, holiday gift bags for the entire dorm donated by alumni, and one of WARC's former directors, Dr. Murray Arndt, English Emeritus
, reading stories and poetry to everyone present.