Jul 17, 2024  
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog 
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Student Life

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Student Life

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On any campus, learning and growth occur both in and outside of the classroom. On a campus like Saint Michael’s, where approximately 98 percent of the student population resides in residence halls, the sphere of student development gains a special significance. Just as faculty members are highly educated and dedicated to teaching, there is a special group of people on campus who are devoted to each student’s intellectual, social, physical, and spiritual development outside of the classroom. Students experience a unique kind of caring and concern for all facets of their growth by the student life staff of Saint Michael’s College. The following pages describe many of the services and activities available to the students of Saint Michael’s. All of these services are designed to provide the type of support needed to enhance a student’s college experience.


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The beginning of any new experience is exciting and tension filled, and starting college is a major transition in one’s life. Saint Michael’s College is concerned with giving new students the best possible introduction to campus life.

The College also offers optional summer programs (POW and SOAR) during June and July.  During each of these optional programs, new students are offered on and off campus experiences where they may learn more about life as a college student at Saint Michael’s College. In addition, each of these optional summer programs is a great way to meet people who will be classmates and peers during the four years at Saint Michael’s.

New Student Orientation is held in August prior to the first day of classes. These first days are reserved for learning about the abundance of resources and services available on campus. Faculty, staff, and student orientation leaders join forces to provide a comprehensive introduction to Saint Michael’s. Students meet with their academic advisor to review their first semester course schedules and to discuss the academic opportunities and challenges that lie before them.

Programs for New Students

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Saint Michael’s College has a very strong commitment to provide a positive first-year experience for students. Student Affairs professionals, in collaboration with Residence Life staff members, coordinate an extensive program of workshops and activities to address the intellectual, social, emotional, physical, spiritual, and cultural development of all first-year students. Programming falls under the You COUNT! initiative of Student Affairs (COUNT standing for the following values: Community; Ownership; Unity in Diversity; Notice One Another; Take Care of Self & Others).  All first year students will be housed within a Theme Living Community (TLC).  Theme Living Communities (TLCs) are supportive environments comprised of groups of students brought together around a common interest or purpose to make living on campus a more rewarding adventure.  The four umbrella themes are Approaches to Transition; Leadership; Service; and Wellness.


Residential Life

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All full-time undergraduate students who do not reside with their families are required to live on campus. Exceptions may be made if space is not available on campus. In this case, seniors will have priority. The College cannot accommodate married or family housing requests during the academic year. Since approximately 98 percent of students reside on the campus, residence hall living is an important part of the years spent here.

Most students find the experience of sharing a room, living on a floor in a residence hall with many other people, and taking an active part in the residence hall community to be both challenging and fun. There is no course in residence hall living listed among the academic descriptions, but the lessons in human nature, the friendships developed, and the memories formed will last a lifetime. The Director, Assistant Deans, Residence Directors, and Residence Assistants are educators who are ready to help students make the most of their residence hall experience.

First-year students will generally reside in Lyons, Ryan, and Alumni Halls located on the main campus. Upper-class students reside in Alumni Hall (traditional residence hall with double rooms and a common bathroom on each wing) or in same-sex suites located in Cashman, Pontigny and Canterbury halls or Quad Commons. Cashman, Pontigny and Canterbury halls are composed of three floors of 4 or 8 person suites containing single bedrooms, bath and living room space, as well as lounges and kitchen space on each floor. Cashman Hall houses the GEAR (Global Experience Academic Residential) program and Canterbury Hall houses the GREAT Housing program.  Students from the Applied Linguistics Department programs reside in Cashman Hall giving American students the unique opportunity to meet people from all parts of the world. Though all of our halls are alcohol-free by virtue of state law and campus policy, we do provide an “alcohol-free” living option, GREAT Housing, for those students who are committed to living in such an environment, and want to be surrounded by students with an equal commitment. Quad Commons consists of single rooms and 4 person suites with single bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a common living space.

Apartment-style housing is available to students with Junior or Senior standing. Residence Hall 4 and Hodson Hall both offer apartment-style facilities with four single rooms and a bath, kitchen, and living room space in each unit. The Townhouse complexes offer apartment-style living for over 400 upper-class students in four, five, or six person units.


Student Health Services

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The Nurse Practitioners are available to see students when they don’t feel well or when they may have any medical related questions or concerns. We offer primary care, women’s services, STI testing and counseling, travel health and vaccine information just to name a few. We also have a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner that can help manage any mental health needs. We are all available by appointment and every visit is completely confidential.

Personal Counseling Services

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The Office of Personal Counseling receives generous support for programs and initiatives from an endowed fund: The Rev. Maurice F. Ouellette, SSE ‘48 Opportunity Fund.

Culturally responsive individual and group mental health counseling, as well as workshops and consultations, are available for students through the Bergeron Wellness Center.  We provide individual counseling by appointment and also have walk-in hours each weekday.  We also provide group counseling and workshops based on the needs of students each year.   Some examples of groups and workshops for students are: meditation and the practice of mindfulness, self-care related to anxiety and depression, body image support, grief support, substance abuse and recovery groups.   All counseling services are confidential.



Food Service

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Resident Dining Program 

The resident dining program, located in Alliot Hall is a “Carte Blanch” meal plan offering unlimited access to the dining room.  There are no daily, weekly, or semester limits to the amount of times you may enter and have a meal.  The program is designed for our active student and the non-traditional schedules of many college students.  The dining room is open from 7:15am - 8:00pm Monday - Friday, and for Brunch and Dinner on weekends.  The dining room offers unlimited access to a variety of food stations such as; pizza, pasta, soups, salad bar, grill, entrée salads, hot entrees, the chef’s exhibition, and house made desserts.   All meals offer choices for vegetarians, vegan diets, and gluten free diets.  We also, in conjunction with health services, provide diets as required for medical reasons to our students.

Retail Food Services On Campus

Café Cheray, located on the first floor of the Cheray Science Center, is open Monday - Friday and serves a wide variety of “grab and go” items.  Sandwiches, salads, soups, and desserts are prepared fresh daily.  The coffee pots are always going with Vermont’s own Speeder & Earl’s Fair Trade organic blends.

Dion Student Center - On the main level of the Quad Commons complex, our newest location features a full service Einstein’s Brothers Bagel shop and the Knight Stand Grill.  Opening in the mornings serving fresh baked bagels and pastries, the menu includes great sandwiches, soups, salads, char-broiled chicken specialties and local Vermont beef hamburgers.  Finish your meal with, or on its own, a fresh brewed coffee, cappuccino, espresso, or latte along with a warm house baked cookie.

For more information on available meal plans or offerings, please call the Dining Service Office at 802-654-2201.

Office of Edmundite Campus Ministry

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The mission of Edmundite Campus Ministry at Saint Michael’s College is to share the Good News of the Gospel with the College community by facilitating encounter with Jesus Christ.  We do this through the celebration of the Church’s Liturgy, in programs promoting knowledge of the Catholic faith, by developing ecumenical and interreligious relationships, and providing retreats and other opportunities for personal spiritual growth.

The Catholic and Edmundite tradition upon which the College was founded is grounded in the conviction that all women and men are created in the image and likeness of God providing a special dignity unique to each person.  Such dignity requires human life to be respected in all of its stages recognizing that we are all children of God.

Therefore, in its pursuit of furthering the Reign of God, the Edmundite Campus Ministry staff seeks to interact with and support every member of the College community in their search for Truth, contributing to the “enhancement of the human person and to the advancement of human culture in light of the Catholic faith.”

Some of the programs and activities sponsored by Edmundite Campus Ministry include daily and Sunday Masses (including our Sunday night student Mass), the MOVE community service program, spiritual retreats, Scripture reflection, peer ministry, interfaith outreach, spiritual direction, pastoral counseling, sacramental preparation, and faith-sharing groups.  Edmundite Campus Ministry also provides opportunities to participate in liturgical ministries such as lectors, Eucharistic ministers, altar servers and music ministry.  Students receive Christian leadership training as the future leaders of the Church through our various programs.  Our programs are designed to encourage everyone to reflect on their relationship with God and others, deepen their faith lives and experience life at its deepest, most meaningful level.

MOVE (Mobilization of Volunteer Efforts)

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MOVE is a broad-based community service organization that is part of Edmundite Campus Ministry. The mission of MOVE comes out of the College’s own mission to be a community of solidarity and service with each other and with all people, in the light of the Catholic faith. The goal of MOVE is to channel the talents, creativity and energy of our community into effective service programs that extend to the larger Chittenden County community and beyond.

MOVE programs respond to a variety of needs. Our work with senior citizens, youth, people who are homeless, the environment, animals,and people with intellectual disabilities are just a few of the many activities that the MOVE office coordinates through local service agencies. A number of extended service trips take place within the U.S. and internationally during school breaks.

Center for Multicultural Student Affairs

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The Center for Multicultural Affairs and Services (CMAS) at Saint Michael’s College is part of the Office of Student Life and a branch of the Department of Student Affairs. The Center hosts the following programs:

US Multicultural Student Services

International Multicultural Student Services

First Generation Student Support

Global Experience Academic Residential program (GEAR)


Summer Orientation for Academic Excellence and Retention (SOAR).

Since its creation in 1989, the Center has used a research and outcome-based model and best practices in the field of Higher Education to provide our students with services and support that can lead them to academic and social success, college satisfaction, and intellectual and personal development while assisting the college in its retention and graduation goals. The Center also serves as a resource for faculty and Staff across campus in such areas as cross-cultural communication, leadership training and development, cultural awareness, multicultural understanding, and student identity development through its training, speaker series, workshops, YOU COUNT events, and the expertise of its staff.

Additionally, the Center organizes a bulk of the educational and recreational programs for the campus community. One of the primary goals of the Center is to foster an intellectual and social environment conducive to twenty-first century living and learning. The Center’s staff consists of the Director/Associate Dean of Students, the Assistant Director/Assistant Dean of Students, the Coordinator of International Student Services, and the Residence Director in our GEAR program.

One of our major initiatives, GEAR, is an integrated experiential living and learning community housed in Cashman Hall. This Global Experience Community is designed to give student an international experience. It benefits both international students and undergraduate students of all cultures and backgrounds by providing them with a unique international and cultural immersion experience right here on our campus.  It is designed to provide students returning from abroad  with an opportunity to continue their international immersion, and those who do not have the opportunity to go abroad but value the cultural and global exposure the unique opportunity to experience abroad right on our campus.

The Center also oversees some of the most important student-led organizations on the campus such as the Martin Luther King Jr. Society, Diversity Coalition, GirlTalk, and SMC1st.

The Martin Luther King Jr. Society is an inter-racial/intercultural group of women and men who interact to promote social justice and the principles of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The programs and activities they organize annually have seen more than three thousand students in attendance. Besides the many scholars and researchers they bring to campus, one of their most important program is The MLK Convocation week.  

Diversity Coalition is a student-led organization dedicated to cultural and global awareness. It is a network of international and American students who work to raise awareness about issues related to culture and human difference by hosting international speakers, informal discussions, cultural celebrations, and scholarly forums. Amongst their Annual programs are the International Festival, Chinese, African, Latin American and other cultural celebrations. Their goal is to enhance cultural awareness and exposure on our campus. 

GirlTalk is a group of women dedicated to providing a safe and supportive space for their peers to discuss issues pertinent to their lives. The group constitutes women from all backgrounds and meets weekly at the Center. Besides their weekly discussion, the group also organizes retreats for women, outings, movie nights, and various other social events that foster friendships across ethnicity, social class, and cultures.

SMC1st is an organization that serves first generation college students through their recreational, educational, and peer-support social activities. The leaders of SMC1st are dedicated first generation student who want to provide support for their peers on campus. Members of the group are also part of the First Gen Scholars’ Council, an advisory group that supporst the Center’s efforts in providing comprehensive services for first generation community members.

The center enjoys a vibrant environment. It is a place where at any time you can find students from all ethnic, linguistic, and cultural backgrounds working on projects, planning activities, engaging in serious cross-cultural conversations, discussing current socio-economic and political issues, relaxing, studying, reading, doing research, or having a confidential conversation with members of the staff.


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Because students tend to spend a great deal of their time on the campus, weekends and evenings are often busy with a number of different activities.  The activities and clubs available at Saint Michael’s are as diverse as the students involved in them.

Students are assisted and supported in the planning and execution of many activities by the Student Activities Director.  With this support, most planned events on the campus are conceived and carried out by the student body.  A typical week could include a lecture, poetry reading,  musical performance, comedian, and functions sponsored by our many academic clubs.  Most weekends witness special events ranging from lectures and films to concerts and sporting events.

The Student Association is the official governing body of the Saint Michael’s College student community.  The Student Association (S.A.) has three major focuses: educational and social programming, college governance, and information exchange.  The S.A. allocates funds for most of the student clubs and organizations on campus and works diligently to keep the lines of communication open between students and campus administration.

The Student Association allocates the funds collected via the student activities fee. There are a wide range of over 40 clubs that students have started.  These clubs run the gamut of interest from the arts, social activism, sports and fitness, and academics.  Funding for the campus newspaper, The Defender, is also derived from the student activities fee.  The Defender is a weekly campus newspaper with print and online editions.

Through educational, social, and cultural programming, Saint Michael’s College works to raise awareness of cultural diversity.  In addition to events, the College has supported the creation of the Martin Luther King Jr. Society and the Diversity coalition in order to promote harmony and understanding.  These student-run organizations sponsor social events, workshops, lectures, and discussion sessions which are open to all members of our community. 

Under the moniker YOU C.O.U.N.T. (Community, Ownership, Unity in Diversity, Notice One Another, Take Care of Self & Others) programs related to (but not limited to) sexual orientation, class, race, religion, cultural differences, and how men and women relate to one another, are made available to students.  Students who attend “earn” opportunities to enter raffles for prizes that could range from a $5 gift certificate to a top pick in the room lottery process.  Saint Michael’s staff, faculty, and students are committed to celebrating differences in order to make the community a better place in which to live.

Volunteer work is an integral part of the lives of many Saint Michael’s students.  It is estimated that over 700 students are involved in volunteer programs each year.  One of the best known groups of student volunteer is our Fire and Rescue Squad.  These highly trained students provide emergency medical care and transportation not only for members of the Saint Michael’s community, but also for residents of surrounding towns and villages.  On duty 365 days a year, these dedicated men and women make over 1,200 calls annually.


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Saint Michael’s College sponsors athletic activities on the varsity and intramural level for both men and women. The Vincent C. Ross Sports Center is a topnotch facility with a 2,100- seat gymnasium and a six-lane swimming pool with a one-meter diving board. Playing fields including artificial turf and natural grass fields, outdoor tennis courts, and running trails provide plenty of space for athletic activities. The Tarrant Recreation Center houses facilities for all students to use. It includes three racquetball courts, one squash court, four basketball/tennis/volleyball courts, a one-eighth mile running track, aerobics/fitness center, and free-weight room. In addition, the center has locker rooms, office space, team media room, climbing wall, and Athletic Hall of Fame Conference Room.

The College is a Division II member of the NCAA, NEHC,  EISA, and Northeast- 10 Conference. Men’s varsity sports include baseball, basketball, cross country, golf, ice hockey, lacrosse, skiing, soccer, swimming & diving, and tennis. Women’s varsity sports include basketball, cross-country, field hockey, ice hockey, lacrosse, skiing, soccer, softball, swimming & diving, tennis, and volleyball.

Saint Michael’s has a long history of competing against some of the best teams in the East. Members of the Northeast-10 are:  Adelphi, American International., Assumption, Bentley, Franklin Pierce, New Haven, LeMoyne, Merrimack, Southern New Hampshire University, Pace, Saint Anselm, Saint Rose, Southern Connecticut State University, and Stonehill.


Recreational Sports Program

Saint Michael’s College offers the college community the opportunity to participate in a variety of recreational activities. These activities allow participants to grow through the development of important skills, such as teamwork, endurance, and cooperation, that will follow them throughout life.

Within the Ross Sports Center and Tarrant Recreation Center, there are many areas where students, faculty, and staff can take advantage of the different recreational and fitness aspects of the facility. There are three racquetball courts, one squash court, four basketball/volleyball/tennis courts, natural rock climbing wall, track, fitness/free-weight room, dance/aerobics room, pool, and a student lounge with a television and billiards table.

The recreational sports program allows students, faculty, and staff to take part in many programs. The program is designed to meet competitive needs and recreational interests through a wide variety of activities such as basketball, volleyball, floor hockey, and soccer. An individual’s skill level is not as important as the player’s desire to participate and enjoy the intramural experience of good fun and sportsmanship.

The recreational sports program also offers many instructional programs. These programs include ripped, yoga, and zumba, among others.

Wilderness Program

It is the mission of the Saint Michael’s College Wilderness Program to enhance the liberal arts experience and contribute to the individual development of students through access to state of the sport adventure sports training and co-curricular adventure sports programing.  Wilderness Program trainings and programs include: sea kayaking, whitewater kayaking, mountain biking, rock climbing, ice climbing, mountaineering, wilderness medicine, leadership training, backpacking, day hiking, as well as international climbing, trekking and paddling expeditions. In addition to programming, we offer an extensive rental program, spring break excursions and the popular Learn to Ski/Snowboard program.  Our office also facilitates the Smuggler’s Notch Season Pass Program and the Petra Cliffs Climbing Center Pass. The Wilderness Program offers something for every ability level.