September 11, 2018 – Jeff Tilson assumed his new role as Barton’s director of housing and residence life on July 16, 2018.
Tilson earned his bachelor’s degree in public relations from the York College of Pennsylvania and his masters of Education in college student a airs from Rutgers University. He first became interested in pursuing a career in residence life when he served as a resident assistant at York.
While he was pursuing his master’s, Tilson completed graduate assistantships at Rutgers as a hall director and as a member of the office of community standards within the residence halls.
Following his graduation from Rutgers, Tilson was employed at Ball State University as a residence hall director for three years. He made the decision to pursue employment elsewhere when he “gained all of the experience [he] could have gained at Ball State” and wanted “more responsibilities and the opportunity to supervise staff full time.”
In his role as housing and residence life director at Barton, Tilson is responsible for managing the entire function of the residence halls on campus which includes supervising the residence life staff, communicating with Aramark and facilities management, leading student conduct hearings, overseeing housing contracts and rooming assignments, serving as the faculty advisor for the Residence Hall Association (RHA), and more.
Tilson described his passion for residence life. “I have always liked being with people when they are at their best and being with people when they are at their worst,” he said.
“When working in housing, you are with students 90 percent of the time so you are bound to see both sides; teachers and other faculty members do not experience that.”
Since the start of his employment at Barton, one of Tilson’s accomplishments has been revamping freshmen move in. His goal was to make move in day a stress free and exciting event for freshmen students and their families.
“However stressful [move in] is for [residence life staff], I want it to be that easy for those students and families,” said Tilson.
Before, students were responsible for moving their own personal items and furniture from their cars to their rooms a er receiving their room keys. This year, however, Tilson collaborated with Katy Locke, student activities director, to recruit volunteers who composed a move in crew.
With the help of this move in crew, students were able to move into their residence halls in expedited amounts of time, leaving them with more energy to organize and decorate how they wanted.
Tilson’s next goal in his position relates to his role as the faculty adviser of the Residence Hall Association (RHA). The 2018-2019 academic year will be the organization’s second year on campus and Til- son wants to increase its productivity and role on campus. He plans to accomplish this goal by gaining national accreditation from the National Association of College and University Residence Halls (NACURH).
Other North Carolina schools with this accreditation include the University of North Carolina, North Carolina State University, Duke University and others.
With this accreditation, RHA would be able to travel to conferences and other schools to gain information about residence life on other campuses.
Tilson said his favorite part about Barton so far is the small campus community and the strong relationships he is able to form as a result of the size of campus. He is excited to continue meeting new people and gain professional experience in his position.
By Alyssa Lanphear