Living and Learning

For new students coming to Portland State, living on-campus has tons of advantages — the ease of getting to class, making quick friendships with students of similar interests and backgrounds, not having to worry about utility bills and the other annoyances of apartment living.

But an even bigger advantage is the academic support available to students living in one of PSU’s nine residence halls.

University Housing and Residence Life offers a wealth of services to make sure students have the supports they need to make their college experience work on all levels. That includes University Success, which provides after-hours academic support at the Ondine and King Albert residence halls. It offers study rooms, classrooms with technology for group study sessions, computer stations, lounges with comfortable couches and hot drink stations. You can also get help with writing projects. If you’ve hit writer’s block, come talk through the assignment with a peer editor or bring in a draft and work through it together.

Academic Coaching is another service offered to first-year students living in the residence halls. It’s a flexible coaching program that allows students to work with professional staff or peer coaches to help them meet their academic goals. It can cover just about anything about campus life, from getting help with school/life balance and time management to sharpening learning strategies and study skills.

In addition, University Housing and Residence Life has teamed up with PSU’s award-winning University Studies program to create distinct learning communities for freshmen within the residence halls. Each of the five communities is centered around one of the required Freshman Inquiry courses, taught through University Studies. Each community is paired with an academic faculty member and offers in-hall academic support. The halls have other themed communities as well.  

And there’s plenty of staff to lean on for help, from resident assistants to Jen Anthony, assistant director for residential student support programs.

“A lot of my job is to make sure folks are thriving and doing well and getting the support they need,” she says. “It’s so much more than housing.”

-> Learn more about on-campus housing options at Portland State

Story by John Kirkland
Video by Peter Simon

Homepage photo: Students Hao Nguyen, Chehalis Stinger and Zachary Mettler.
Photo by Peter Simon