At Goucher College, learning happens everywhere. Goucher students apply their talents and leadership skills in clubs and organizations, in student government, on athletic teams, in internships and community service projects, and in performing-arts productions. Through collaborations with faculty, staff and students, members of the student affairs division provide our students engaging, supportive and challenging experiences that promote student learning and holistic development. Our commitment to Goucher’s community principles of respect, inclusion, communication, community service/social justice, and responsibility is at the core of all our endeavors. By participating in intercultural, international, service opportunities and other co-curricular experiences, students are able to actualize their leadership and citizenship potential both locally and globally.
The living-learning environment is an integral part of the educational experience at Goucher. The residential life program stresses individual and community responsibility, respect, and cooperation. The professional staff members within the Office of Residential Life with student community assistants (CAs) to educate students and help them adjust to and become involved in the community. Staff also works collaboratively with Multicultural Student Services to provide a broad range of programming in the residence halls that is inclusive of diversity. Four of Goucher’s residence halls are divided into 15 houses and have a traditional residence hall set up (student rooms with common bathrooms on each floor). A fifth residence hall, with a focus on healthy lifestyles, is divided into suites. Our sixth residence hall is a combination of suites and apartments. First-year students are typically assigned to double and triple occupancy rooms. As space permits, a limited number of single rooms are available for upper class students and those with documented medical needs. The small size and intimacy of each living unit encourages the involvement of all members in the design of the residential community. Within the framework of all college policies, each house determines its own social regulations and plans and sponsors social activities and educational programs.
Goucher offers a variety of housing options, including language floors, quiet areas, substance-free housing, housing where students are committed to sustainable practices, as well as single-sex, coed, and gender-neutral floors. A nonsmoking environment is maintained in all residence halls. Students must maintain full-time academic status to live on campus. If a student drops or withdraws from classes such that the student is actively enrolled in fewer than 12 credits at any point during a semester already in progress, the student will be required to move off-campus unless the student is approved to remain on campus by the office of residential life.
Because residential living is fundamental to the mission of the college and the experience of a Goucher student, all full-time undergraduate students are required to live on campus and participate in one of the college meal plans. Exceptions may be made for students who meet any of the following criteria, and provide supporting documentation.
1. Students who choose to commute from their permanent home address within 30 miles of Goucher’s campus, and are residing with an immediate family member. The Office of Residential Life defines “immediate family member” as a parent, legal guardian, or sibling. Exceptions will also be considered for students residing with an individual who has stood “in loco parentis” to the student for one year or more, immediately prior to a student’s date of first matriculating at the College. In loco parentis is commonly understood to refer to a relationship in which a person has put himself or herself in the situation of a parent, by assuming and discharging the obligations of a parent to a child with whom he or she has no legal or biological connection. It exists when an individual intends to take on the role of a parent. Persons who are standing in loco parentis include those with day-to-day responsibilities to care for or financially support a child.
2. Students who are at least 23 years old.
3. Students who are married.
4. Students who are legal guardians of minors who reside with them on a permanent basis. (The college does not provide housing for non-matriculated minor children.)
5. Based on projected space availability by the Office of Residential Life, a limited number of junior and senior students may apply to live off-campus. Applications to live off-campus must be submitted to the Office of Residential Life before March 31 of the spring semester proceeding the academic year in which the student desires to reside off campus. Decisions to approve such requests are made based upon projected space availability, class standing (as determined by earned academic credit hours), and the order in which applications are received. Submission of an application does not guarantee an exception from the residency requirement. The Office of Residential Life will review all applications and communicate whether or not an application has been approved; thus, students should not secure off-campus housing until being informed of the decision regarding their application, as this alone will not exempt them from the residency requirement, and may result in financial obligations to both the college and an off-campus landlord/agency.
Students who reside off-campus without meeting one or more of the aforementioned criteria and receiving the appropriate approval will be held responsible for all room and board costs for the semesters in which they are enrolled without such an approval.
The vice president and dean of students may authorize exceptions to this policy, based upon space availability needs.
For more detailed information concerning residential living, refer to the Campus Handbook, Goucher College Residence Hall Contract, and the Residential Life website.
The Office of Intercultural Affairs is committed to working with members of the Goucher community to foster and sustain a learning environment that is respectful, inclusive, and appreciative of diversity in its many forms. Faculty, staff, and students, along with offices such as Religious and Spiritual Life, Hillel, International Studies, and other offices regularly collaborate to cultivate an environment that is engaged in learning about difference on campus, locally, and abroad. Intercultural Affairs also works closely with students in our Educational Opportunity Program (EOP), a program specifically designed to provide support to first-generation college students. The office collaborates with individuals and student groups on various programmatic initiatives, such as Women’s History Month and Pride Month celebrations. These programs provide opportunities for reflection, dialogue, and learning. Special programs and activities are also sponsored for international students through this office. Contact the assistant dean for intercultural affairs for more information.
Advising and Counseling
Goucher College offers several programs designed to encourage student success. First-year students are assigned a faculty member who serves as their first-year adviser to assist them with curricular and academic planning. Once students declare a major, they are advised by a faculty member in their major. The Academic Center for Excellence (ACE) and the Writing Center assist students in developing study and learning strategies necessary for college success. Members of the student affairs staff are available to provide professional advice in their own field of expertise. For example, issues regarding residence life are addressed by the staff of residential life; career planning by the career development staff; religious concerns by the chaplain; and so on. Students may seek confidential short-term personal counseling from licensed counselors at the Student Health and Counseling Services Center or from the college chaplain. Referral for long-term counseling or therapy is coordinated by the college counselors with mental health professionals in the local area.
Health and Counseling Services
Student Health and Counseling Services offers a holistic approach to health care including preventive medicine, mental health, alternative medicine and health education and encourages students to participate fully in maintaining their physical and emotional wellness. Comprehensive outpatient primary mental and medical care services are provided on a confidential basis by licensed, certified physicians, psychologists, nurse practitioners, nurses, and mental health counselors. When necessary, the staff can assist with referrals to providers in the local area. The center also offers women’s health care, stress-reduction events, and has a small onsite laboratory for routine procedures and pharmacy for commonly prescribed medications. Although health insurance coverage is required by the college for all students, there is no charge to utilize the health and counseling services.
Career Development Office
The Career Development Office (“CDO”) helps students and alumnae/i find and pursue careers that combine their interests, skills and values. The office is committed to facilitating student success by connecting students with resources, alumni and employers to achieve their career goals. The CDO offers programs and services designed to help at all stages of the career planning process and encourages students to visit the office each year during their time at Goucher.
The CDO assists students in five main areas including: major and career exploration, student employment, internships, full-time employment, and graduate and professional school. Students can connect with the CDO through individual appointments, walk-in and resume advising, and by participating in special events. Students may also connect with the CDO electronically through email (firstname.lastname@example.org), and through social media - Facebook (CDO-Goucher College) and Twitter (CDOGoucher.) Students are encouraged to connect with the Goucher community to expand their network and gain advice from experts in their field by joining the Goucher Professional Network (GPN) within LinkedIn.
The office also manages the academic internship and student employment programs. Information about the internship program can be found in the Academic Internship section of the catalog.
Religious and Spiritual Life
Religious and spiritual life at Goucher touches upon each of the following areas:
- Exploration of religions and spirituality through the liberal arts curriculum;
- Deep engagement with particular religious traditions;
- Growth in multifaith appreciation, dialogue, learning;
- Finding support through religious resources on campus and pastoral care offered to individuals and groups; and
- Participating with various campus constituencies to raise social justice issues and work for positive social change.
Haebler Memorial Chapel and the Harry and Jeannette Weinberg Jewish Student Center are the primary locations for religious life at Goucher. The chapel is open daily from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. (and often in the evenings or on weekends) for silence, solitude, and prayer.
The Chaplain supports and oversees all aspects of religious and spiritual life at Goucher. The Chaplain is available to help students make connections with one another, students at other colleges, and with religious groups in the community. There are opportunities for interfaith and multifaith conversation as well as permanent spaces on campus for students who are Jewish, Christian, Quaker, or interested in meditation to connect. The Goucher Christian Fellowship, affiliated with InterVarsity, meets in small and large groups for Bible Study, worship, and fellowship.
Cynthia Terry, college Chaplain, has her office in the chapel basement. Often in collaboration with the Student Health and Counseling Center, the Chaplain meets with students individually and in groups, to deal with issues of grief, addiction, illness; to learn how to help a friend; to think through academic or personal decisions; to process family issues; to explore the complexities of an experience abroad and returning home.
“Hillel”, the Jewish student organization on campus, provides social, educational, religious, spiritual, and community service programming to Goucher students. The full-time Hillel staff, including a rabbi/director and an engagement (outreach) director, helps students plan events and provides for meaningful experiences, as well as for mentorship and counseling. Many of Hillel’s events take place in the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Jewish Student Center, which includes a full kosher dining hall, as well as a lounge space, a computing center, and a small library. Hillel provides programs open to all students, regardless of faith or background, including weekly Shabbat dinners and services, classes and discussion groups, cultural programs, opportunities to explore spirituality, Israel-related programming, and holiday observances and celebrations. Regular social justice and community service programming are hallmarks of Hillel and Goucher’s Jewish community.
Student-led religious groups provide a host of activities and initiatives for spiritual and religious engagement at Goucher, including Goucher Christian Fellowship, Goucher Hillel, Jubilate Deo! (the Goucher Catholic community), Sacred Ground (a Christian dance troupe), and the Meditation Club. In addition, there are students of other traditions who seek to find ways to connect with one another, including Muslims, Quakers, and Unitarian-Universalists. Students are encouraged to explore and seek out local religious congregations in addition to campus offerings. The Office of the Chaplain has information on local institutions recommended by Goucher students.
The Office of Student Engagement is the hub for students’ co-curricular life at Goucher. We believe that a major component of the Goucher College experience is social: the after-class interaction with friends, classmates, faculty, and staff. Students who engage in co-curricular offerings are more likely to experience academic and personal success. Students are encouraged to continue the dialogue begun in class or simply get to know someone over a cup of coffee. The Pearlstone Student Center and the Athenaeum offer places to eat around the clock and various lounges and conference rooms in which to meet with others.
Students often go to the Gopher Hole, a popular campus hangout, evenings between 9 p.m. and 1 a.m. for a bite to eat or to study with friends. Located in the Pearlstone Student Center, the Gopher Hole is a student-run coffeehouse that offers the Goucher community affordable food and diverse activities in a relaxed atmosphere. The staff is committed to serving each customer in an efficient and friendly manner while maintaining a healthy, positive, team environment. Students with talent to share find it is the perfect venue for performing.
To find out what’s going on around campus, scan the digital signage found in Pearlstone, Stimson, and the Athenaeum, read Goucher’s e-mail digest and Student Government announcements or check out the Calendar of Events on the Goucher website.
Student Government Association
Goucher’s Student Government Association (SGA) serves both as a forum for debate on issues affecting the community and as an organizing body for students to act collectively to achieve positive change at Goucher. SGA facilitates dialogue and communication among the student body, faculty, staff, and administration, while insuring that each of these bodies addresses student concerns. The SGA legislative body (called the Student Senate) consists of elected representatives from amongst various facets of the student body. The Student Senate is responsible for authorizing extracurricular clubs and organizations as well as regulating the monetary allocations to these organizations. Officers for SGA and its standing committees are elected in campus-wide elections each spring to form the SGA Executive Board. Meetings of the Student Senate are open to the entire Goucher community.
Clubs and Organizations
Clubs and organizations reflect student interests in special areas and offer all students a vehicle for becoming more involved in college life. The information, experiences, and opportunities for leadership associated with club membership are different from those available in the classroom; therefore, students are strongly encouraged to participate in one or more groups.
Goucher has more than 60 student organizations, in the following umbrella categories:
Class and campus governance
- Creative Alliance (Performing Arts/Publications and Media)
- Social Justice Coalition
- Faith and Identity
- Political and Academic
- Club Sports
- Special Interest
All clubs are organized and run by students, with a member of the staff serving as adviser to each umbrella category of organizations. Office of Student Engagement Staff members are always willing to meet with students who want to activate (or reactivate) a club or organization.
The college yearbook, Donnybrook Fair, is published by students in honor of the senior class. Preface, Goucher’s art and literary magazine, is published once a year. Students are invited to submit poems, stories, plays, essays, photography, and art work. The Quindecim, the official college newspaper, is produced by students and offers an outlet for creative talent as well as training and experience for aspiring journalists, photographers, and graphic designers.
Goucher students are encouraged to engage in the performing arts as both participants and observers. The Dance Department presents six to eight annual on-campus formal and informal dance concerts for enthusiastic audiences drawn from the Goucher and Baltimore communities. Chorégraphie Antique, the dance history ensemble, and the Goucher Dancers in Action perform locally and regionally. The Theatre Department stages four to six productions a year, as well as public showcases and workshops directed and designed by faculty, guest artists, and advanced students. Students are encouraged to work as actors, designers, and technicians. The student-run Open Circle Theatre and Pizzazz groups offer further production opportunities. The Music Department produces 40 to 60 public events each year. Student vocalists are invited to audition for the Goucher Chorus, Chamber Singers, and Opera Workshop or to join the Reverend’s Rebels or Red Hot Blue, informal student-directed singing groups that entertain both on and off campus. Instrumentalists are encouraged to audition for the Goucher Chamber Symphony, the Goucher Chamber Music Group, the Goucher Jazz Ensemble, and the Goucher African Drum and Dance Ensemble. Computer enthusiasts are invited to participate in the Music Department’s two computer music studios. Numerous artists and companies perform at the college during the academic year. Many events are free, and students may attend others at reduced rates. The Office of Student Engagement plans several off-campus trips each year to cultural and performing arts events. While opportunities for performance and exhibition are available to all students at all levels, public performance and exhibition are granted through audition and selection only. Adjudicators for such audition and selection are members of the Arts Division faculty. Because adjudication is a fundamental aspect of the arts professions, the entire Arts Division considers the process of evaluation, through audition or portfolio review, to be an important aspect of professional training and education in the arts.
Physical Education and Athletics
Students are required to take one activity course in physical education. Some of the more popular activity courses are strength training, jujitsu, yoga, ballroom dance, soccer, and Tai Chi Chuan. The Equestrian Program offers small, personalized riding classes for novice through advanced levels using a contemporary approach to hunt-seat riding. Throughout the year, students participate in horse shows and clinics both on and off campus. For a more detailed description, see the Physical Education and Athletics Department section of this catalogue.
Goucher sponsors 18 varsity intercollegiate athletic teams that compete in Division III of the NCAA, as members of the Landmark Conference. The 10 intercollegiate sports for women are basketball, cross country, field hockey, lacrosse, soccer, swimming, tennis, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field, and volleyball. The eight men’s sports are basketball, cross country, lacrosse, soccer, swimming, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field, and tennis. The equestrian team, the college’s 19th intercollegiate varsity sport, is available for both men and women and competes in Region I of the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association.
Recreation, Intramurals, and Sports Clubs
A variety of non-competitive recreational activities are sponsored throughout the year. Recent activities have included bowling, break dancing, hip hop, indoor soccer, and weightlifting. The outdoor equipment center allows students to check out camping equipment and hybrid and mountain bikes at no charge with a valid Goucher ID.
All students are encouraged to participate in intramurals or as members of sport clubs. Both programs are flexible and seek to create opportunities for those in the Goucher community to participate in team, dual, and individual sports or activities for men and women. Intramural activities are planned and directed by the Department of Physical Education and Athletics and may include the following activities: soccer, flag football, racquetball, volleyball, floor hockey, basketball, indoor soccer, and softball. Club sports are administered and operated by students based on current interest in competition in a given activity. The key to the success of sports clubs is student leadership and participation. Each club is formed, developed, governed, and administered by the club’s student members working with an adviser. Some of the most recent clubs have been ultimate frisbee, fencing, frisbee golf, and jujitsu. The Riding Club provides a variety of riding and non-riding events for those interested in equestrian activities.
The Department of Physical Education and Athletics is housed in the Decker Sports and Recreation Center, which includes a large gymnasium, a cardio-fitness center, a strength and conditioning center, one racquetball and one squash court, a multipurpose room, a classroom, an athletic training room, locker rooms, and staff offices. A recreation gym and the von Borries pool are located in the adjacent Welsh Gymnasium.
Outdoor facilities include a synthetic turf field with lights, three natural-grass athletic fields, eight tennis courts, an eight-lane synthetic-surface track, a natural-grass stadium field, five miles of wooded trails, and a nine-hole Frisbee golf course. Indoor and outdoor riding rings, trails with cross-country jumps, hunt course areas, and stables are part of the equestrian facility. The college owns horses that students may use for classes. Students who wish to board privately owned horses may contact the director of the Equestrian Program for more information.
Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act
Goucher is required to prepare an annual report that includes information on participation in and expenditures for men’s and women’s athletic teams. This report is available for inspection by students, prospective students, and the public. A copy of the report is available in the office of the Physical Education and Athletics Department and can be accessed on the athletics website at http://athletics.goucher.edu/information/EADA_Report
Office of Public Safety
The Goucher College Department of Public Safety believes in the dignity and worth of all people. Its members are committed to providing quality, community-oriented public safety services. We strive to improve and maintain a high quality of residential life; protect the rights and safety of our campus community; and utilize problem solving strategies to address the security concerns of students, staff, and guests. The public safety staff consists of the director, senior associate director, welcome center manager, and 17 full-time and 13 part-time officers. Officers are on duty at the communications desk and on campus patrol 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
The Public Safety Office responds to all campus emergencies, conducts investigations, issues Goucher College OneCard identification cards, and maintains the vehicle registration and parking enforcement programs. The office is located in the lower level of Heubeck Hall. Any and all on-campus emergencies, criminal activity, suspicious conditions, subjects, or vehicles should be reported immediately. (See Goucher’s Campus Handbook for information published in compliance with the Clery Act.)