Redeemer aims to offer a holistic education that weaves faith through all aspects of learning and life inside and outside the classroom. This includes a unique, communal residence experience that enhances students’ educational development by shaping them spiritually, emotionally and interpersonally. It is with this intentional approach that the university is making plans to construct a new residence for fall 2021.
Enrolment growth is driving the need for more on-campus housing to accommodate first- and second-year students. Both the townhouses and Augustine Hall differ from traditional university dorms in that they are designed as homes for six to eight people who live, study, pray, cook and grow in community together. In a recent survey, an overwhelming majority of students requested to maintain that sense of home and community unique to Redeemer’s campus. Sometimes described as “independent, but not isolated,” they prefer units structured like a house with a full kitchen, a living room, and a “porch life” characterized by the ability to see and hear what’s happening at other homes. This neighbourhood feeling encourages students to get involved and meet others through visiting, worshipping and praying on each other’s porches.
Plans for the new residence seek to maintain the best aspects of the existing dorms while also addressing the needs of students today. “We want to enhance the sense of community and togetherness, but we also want to keep the residence efficient and affordable,” said Kevin Johnson, dean of students. The new residence is planned as a single building with three floors, each containing various units that can accommodate anywhere from two to eight students. Common spaces and gathering areas will also be featured on each floor. The goal is for construction to begin later this summer so that the residence will be open in time for the academic year beginning September 2021.