Firm Helps Students Prepare for Life After College
By: Jim Kouri, CPP
Going beyond traditional student housing property management and helping students prepare for lifeâ€”thatâ€™s the approach of The Grove, the brand of student housing properties built and operated by Campus Crest Communities, a vertically-integrated student housing company based in Charlotte, NC.
The Grove has a team of talented staff who focus on designing and implementing programs that help residents become successful both during and beyond the college years. The Grove team collaborates with local professionals and university staff to offer programs that best fit each Grove community.
Campus Crestâ€™s property management team refers to its â€œX-factorâ€â€”an intangible but very present extra â€˜popâ€™ at each propertyâ€”which it uses to foster a community environment that has a positive impact on the social fabricof its properties and residents. Campus Crest has the philosophy that by providing programming geared towards educating its residents about life after college, the residentsâ€™ lives while in college can be more tailored to meet future goals.
â€œWe believe itâ€™s important to expose our residents to life after The Grove. Living here is
pretty sweet with no worries about roommates not paying rent or bills and the luxury of having a full amenity package at their fingertips. We donâ€™t want them having total culture shock when itâ€™s time to enter the real world,â€ says Julie Yow, VP of Field Operations for Campus Crest Real Estate Management.
Programming geared towards life after college includes resume workshops, how to manage your credit, cooking on a budget, and more.
In addition to preparing our residents for life after The Grove, the staff works on promoting healthy lifestyle during the college years so that when it is time for them to go, residents start off on the right foot mentally and physically. â€œWe know college is stressful, so we help balance that stress with a lot of fun. We put together themed parties like â€˜Peace, Love, Groveâ€™ event where students wear tie dyed Grove shirts, love beads, and participate in green daysâ€, said Yow.
â€œOther ways we help residents relax are through fitness classes, pool parties, Monday Night Football parties, and movie nights.â€
The Grove also hosts programming on health topics including avoiding eating disorders and healthy eating habits.
â€œOur events are successful because they are led and organized by our community assistantsâ€”peers attending the same university. When residents feel a part of something, they are more likely to stay where they are.
Making our residents better, makes the Grove a better placeâ€, said Yow. â€œOne way we help residents is through designing programs to help them look at things from a different vantage point. For example, in one of our past events residents helped blow up hot air balloons and took tethered balloon rides, illustrating how different things look when you see them from a new perspective.â€
Campus Crest also helps students reach beyond the Grove and the university to the community around them. Collaboration with local clubs and organizations motivates resident involvement in recycling programs, local school and church projects, and mentoring programs.
Campus Crest opened its first location in August of 2005 in Asheville, NC. Currently Campus Crest has 19 properties provide fully-loaded living facilities for college students in Alabama, Georgia, New Mexico, North Carolina, Texas, Colorado, Kansas, Arkansas, and Washington. Additional locations will be developed later this year and 2009 in with plans to expand into the Northeast and Western parts of the country along with growing its
presence in the Southeast and Midwest.
About Campus Crest and The Grove: Campus Crest is a vertically-integrated student housing company based in Charlotte, NC. Through its wholly-owned Subsidiaries, Campus Crest Development, Campus Crest Construction and Campus Crest Real Estate Management, it delivers one of the best student housing products in the United States. Through its brand, the Grove, [www.gogrove.com], its projects are both amenity rich and have progressive lifestyle programming to help build the total sense of community
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he's a columnist for The Examiner (examiner.com) and New Media Alliance (thenma.org). In addition, he's a blogger for the Cheyenne, Wyoming Fox News Radio affiliate KGAB (www.kgab.com). Kouri also serves as political advisor for Emmy and Golden Globe winning actor Michael Moriarty. He's former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed "Crack City" by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He's also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He's a news writer and columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he's syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. Kouri appears regularly as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Fox News Channel, Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, etc. To subscribe to Kouri's newsletter write to COPmagazine@aol.com and write "Subscription" on the subject line.