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Project Free Time 

Thursday, April 30th

5:30 p.m.

Konovor Auditorium, Dodd Center 


David Pereira and RJ Anderson (Humanities House Alum) have been making a documentary on human trafficking over the past four years.  Free Time began as a campaign to raise awareness, but evolved into a much larger search for answers about humanitarian practice.  


The trailer can be found on their website: http://projectfreetime.org/   


Do you want to make a difference? Believe in sustainability? Need to get rid of that old couch before you move out?

Join the Give and Go volunteer group! We are looking for dedicated and friendly people to help with our annual collection and donation. Volunteers are needed for the tent collecting sites starting Wednesday May 6th until Saturday May 9th as well as with helping to organize our donations to send out from May 10th to the 12th. Although it is finals week, the positions do not require much time commitment. Give and Go is a great way to earn those last service hours while also promoting sustainability and helping our community partners throughout the state! Join us today!

Questions and comments? Please contact uconn.co.giveandgo@gmail.com.


Academic Achievement Center

Want a chance to win from food for finals?! 
Meet with a coach in the Academic Achievement Center now through Finals Week and complete a 5 Day Study Plan.  You will be entered into a drawing to win a gift card to one of these restaurants;

WiMSE House End of the Year Celebration

Pre-Pharmacy House Faculty Meet & Greet

Public Health House Picnic

Global House Banquet

More End of the Year Events to Come!
Engineering House Dinner with the Dean
Monday, April 27th

Innovation House End of the Year Dinner
Thursday, April 30th

Leadership House Banquet
Saturday, May 2nd

Community Service House End of the Year Reception
Sunday, May 3rd

Congratulations to all of the Student Life Awards nominees, finalists and recipients!

Learning Community Leadership Award

Andrew Kim 
Leadership House
First Year Excellence in Innovation Award

Vivek Tedla
Innovation House

For a full listing of awards and finalists please visit www.sla.uconn.edu
2015-2016 Learning Community Executive Council

Aaron Plotke
Christine Doherty
Chris Reschberger
Erin Aspinwall
Maggie Balogh
Riley Pflomm
Sabrina Harrison- New
Samantha Rogers- New
Alex Hu- New

Advisor: Jen Mathieu

Congratulations to the new members!

Congratulations to all of the Learning Community Ambassadors that have been selected for 2015-2016!

Erin Aspinwall

Joanna Hull

Hannah Chen

Kimberlee Arnett

Alex Hu

Joe Dinan

Oindri Sen 

Jeremy Lao- New

Nicole Lundgren- New

Brittany Chiu- New

Seyoung Lim- New

Pierre Fils- New

Francesca Caruso- New

Carlos Madrid- New

Emily Castagna- New

Julia Eldridge- New

Jocelyn Foraker- New

Nneoma Obi- New

Karan Shah- New

Pio Yoon- New

Amy Aisenberg- New

Katherine Marti- New

Kristen Marti- New

Katelyn Yamartino- New

Juliana Jacoboski- New

Grace Lo- New

Reaghan Bennett- New

Bronwyn Reeve- New

Advisor: Kristen Glines
Learning Community Newsletter
April 2015
Learning Community Director Highlight:

Dr. Jaci VanHeest, Public Health House
Dr. Jaci VanHeest, Professor in the Neag School of Education at UConn is also the Faculty Director of Public Health House.  She received her undergraduate degree from Hope College, Holland Michigan in Physical Education and completed her M.S. in Exercise Physiology and Ph.D. in Exercise Endocrinology at Michigan State University. Dr. VanHeest completed two Post-Doctoral fellowships; one at the University of Cincinnati in Protein Chemistry and Membrane Transport and the second at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center in Body Weight Regulation, Obesity and Pediatrics. She currently investigates a before school activity intervention in overweight children, examining the physical, hormonal and metabolic outcomes.  Dr. VanHeest has been the Faculty Director of Public Health House for 5 years.


Dr. VanHeest is not alone in her work with Public Health House.  Dan Clark joined Public Health House as a Graduate Assistant in 2014.  Dan received his undergraduate degree in Psychology and Economics from Utah State University and his M.A. in Psychology-Applied Behavior Analysis from the University of Maryland and The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine where he worked as a behavioral therapist and researcher, primarily working with children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders. He is currently enrolled in the Educational Psychology program at UConn. His research and clinical work so far at UConn involves changing diagnostic assessments to better assess children with severe intellectual disabilities to better inform intervention.  Dan's interest and background are what makes his connection to Public Health House a natural one.


Public Health House enables students to expand their understanding and interest in community service, public health, education and advocacy. Through active, informed, and problem-based learning, students augment their understanding of public policy, public health as a profession and their role within the public health field.  This year Public Health House students participate in many service-based activities such as Habitat for Humanity Re-Store, Tre-County ARC and The Village Center.  They have also hosted a series of different activities and programs during National Public Health Week which took place in the beginning of April.  It is with Dr. VanHeest's continued contributions and dedication to Public Health House that has made the community so successful.  Many students can attest to the strength of the community, and the tremendous support they have felt as they transitioned into life as a student at UConn.


"As a timid freshman coming into a big campus, Public Health House (PHH) provided me with the community feeling within a large university like UConn. It is through PHH that I have made friendships that I will treasure forever, done service that I will always remember, and grown into the person I am today. PHH has given me a chance to step out of my comfort zone and grow as a leader in a tight-knit community in which making a positive impact on members is priority. It has also inspired me to step into other leadership positions around campus, and encourage others to do the same. Without PHH, my freshman year at UConn would have been extremely different and I will always treasure our community." - Codi Bierce, PHH Student


"Public Health House has been more than a group of students with common interests. It has been an active and engaging environment that seeks to better our community, locally and across the nation. It has been a catalyst for new opportunities and friendships. It has helped me grow as an individual and as a member of a society that needs change - Public Health House is that change."- Cameron Flower, PHH Student

Learning Community Student Highlight:

Yezmin Crespo-Adorno, WiMSE House

Name: Yezmin Crespo-Adorno


What would you sing at Karaoke night?

Where you belong - Kari Kimmel


If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?

I would travel to Spain. I am Puerto Rican and I would love to connect to my historical and cultural roots by visiting the mother country of Puerto Rico.


What one thing could you not go a day without?

My ipod. I have my very busy schedule with alerts on it along with my texting app (I don't have texting on my phone) which allows me to stay connected and updated with everyone.


What did you want to be when you were little?

I wanted to be a Pediatrician


Who would you want to play you in a movie of your life?

My younger self- Madison Pettis

My older self- Rosario Dawson


If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Rice and beans, steak and a fresh salad


If you were a superhero, what would your power be?

Ability to control time! I feel like I never have enough time in the day to get all the things I want/ desire to occur. Plus I could pause time and really enjoy certain moments as well as go back in time to relive and fix things from the past to create a better future.


What is your favorite TV show:

I have too many but my most favorite would be Law and Order SVU, Grey's Anatomy, and Scandal.


If you were the ruler of your own country, what would be the first law you would introduce?

Everyone has access to free college education. The hope would be that more individuals, especially minorities, will be encouraged to go to college and enter into professional careers where there is a lack of diversity especially in careers in the STEMs.


What celebrity (living or dead) would you like to meet at Starbucks for a cup of coffee?

Mariska Hargitay-main actress from Law and Order SVU as well as founder of the Joyful Heart Foundation that campaigns against abused women.


Where do you see yourself in ten years?

I would be living my ultimate career goal which is to become a doctor and making an impact in my patients' lives.


If money were no object, what would you do all day?

Travel to many different countries to get a quick glimpse of other people's lives and cultures from different parts of the world.


What is your favorite candy?

Kit Kat Bar, Dark Chocolate, Icebreakers Spearmint Mints (great for studying)


If you had to describe yourself as an animal, which one would it be?

Dog. Very loyal, curious, friendly, caring, and fun


What is your favorite movie of all time?



What is your favorite Learning Community memory?

Top Memories: LC Field Day (both years), trip to the CT science center, and the Friday tradition to go Ice skating during the winter

The 1st Annual 
Learning Community Spirit Week 
was a Success!

1st Place: League of Justice- Leadership House
2nd Place: Plastered Penguins- Innovation House
3rd Place: Don't Drop the Balls- Leadership House
Most Spirited Team- Globo Gym- Global House

Themed Days:
150+ students, faculty and staff posted on social media

Learning Community Day of Service: 
60 students signed up to participate in 3 different service sites!

Learning Community End of the BBQ: 
Over 200 students attended the BBQ!  Leadership House had the largest number of attendees with over 20 students!

The 2015 Most Spirited Learning Community is...

Learning Community Student Leadership Consortium 
The Learning Community Student Leadership Consortium is comprised of all student leaders within the Learning Community Program; mentors, RAs, councils, Learning Community Ambassadors and the Learning Community Executive Council.

Thank you to all Learning Community student leaders who attended these meetings this semester!  We will be providing a calendar in August with the dates of the meetings for 2015-2016!

Thank you to Dr. Rory McGloin, Professor of Communications who spoke to the Learning Community Student Leadership Consortium on 4/23 about speaking confidently as a leader.


Happy last week of classes!  For those of you who are returning to the Learning Community next year, we look forward to kicking off another awesome year at the Husky WOW Kickoff on August 30th!  For those of you moving out of a Learning Community this year, please remember that you are always a Learning Community alumni and we hope that you will stay in touch with us.

To all of the faculty, staff, and student leaders, thank you for your dedication to the Learning Community Program this year!  We have really enjoyed working with you and getting to know you!

Congratulations to all of our Learning Community seniors on your upcoming graduation!

We wish everyone the best of luck on their final exams and hope that you all have a great summer break!

The Learning Community Program Team
Melissa Foreman, Jennifer Mathieu, & Kristen Glines

Office of First Year Programs & Learning Communities
Learning Community Program