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"Community is part and parcel of the architecture of education, and the supporting architecture of each House — from the faculty head to the resident advisers — serves as the external engineering that allows the internal engineering — of the students — to occur."
— Professor Gregory Melchor-Barz, Faculty Head of North House

West House at Founders Walk International Student Mixer
East House Mix-Up VUcept Sessions

Community starts with 1,600 first-year students living together in one central location—but it continues on every residence hall floor, in every Vanderbilt Visions group, and most important, with the understanding that we are all part of the same university. 

All students begin their time at Vanderbilt the same way—by taking the journey from The Commons to Alumni Lawn during Founders Walk on Move-In Weekend. From there, intentional programming at all levels of The Commons—from the whole class to each floor—seeks to ensure that students not only embrace the diversity of the university community, but also develop cognizance of their individual role in creating a supportive environment. Students are not just participants in this community; they also actively create its diversity, inclusion, and ongoing dialogue. 

"During my Commons experience, the students and faculty I have met in my House, on my floor, and through various events have shown me what it really means to network and allowed me to grow socially and mentally when it comes to working with people; every student displays a passion to do well and to help others. I have made friends that I will stay in touch with for a lifetime and that have helped make my first-year experience one that I will never forget.”
—Jalen Dansby, C'18, Gillette House President