As liberal arts colleges, the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's promote the development of the individual within the context of living and learning in community. Through staffing and programs, the colleges create a supportive residential, learning environment which enhances the Benedictine practices of discerning one's purpose, strengthening one's practice of values, and supporting a just and caring community. Students living on campus benefit from connections with others, opportunities to develop a balanced lifestyle, use of campus facilities and the continued reflective exploration of their own faith.
The living arrangements on campus intentionally support the development of community and the individual. The colleges offer new students an opportunity to live in residence halls with other first-year students. Upperclass students have an opportunity to select from a variety of housing options including apartments, suites, single rooms and traditional doubles.
The Residential Life staff consists of upperclass students and professional staff who are resources and can assist students with connections to a network of support services. Residential staff can provide information on academics, career development, campus involvement, spiritual development and life planning. The staff is an integral part in the college's focus on teaching students about living in a community. The standards of expected behavior reflect the values in the Benedictine tradition of worship and work. Through developing quality personal relations in activities, students learn about individual respect and responsibility for personal growth, sensitivity to people, stewardship of common property, and care for the environment.
While the residential programs are separate in order to address the specific developmental needs of women and men, the interaction between the residents of both campuses is supportive of the joint academic mission of the colleges. Residential areas on both campuses have computer connections to individual rooms as well as to common access computer labs. Residential staff promote educational activities outside of the classroom by supporting intramural teams, service projects, career development outreach programs, health awareness programs and trips to events in the Minneapolis/Saint Paul metro area.
Students who live on campus have a greater use of campus libraries, computer labs, athletic facilities, intramural facilities, and contact with faculty and staff. The lifelong friendships developed on a residential campus come from the quality of time students spend with faculty, staff and other students from both campuses. As Catholic institutions of higher learning, the residential programs of the colleges seek to promote a balanced practice of physical, spiritual, emotional, intellectual, recreational and social living. An outline of regulations governing residential living can be found in each college's Housing Agreement and the Saint Benedict's Bennie Book or Saint John's J-Book.