Students live together to address community issues

Andrew Henderson

While some students strive to create community by having hallway conversations, four students are working and living together to improve the WKU community. 

Ihyauszz Cole, Kristina Downing, Nneka Nwosisi and Kurtis Spears are the four students who lived at the $100 Solution Living Learning Community House, which opened last fall semester.  The $100 Solution House was developed in conjunction with The $100 Solution and WKU Department of Housing and Residence Life. 

Lauren Cunningham, ALIVE Center Community Engagement coordinator, said about one year ago HRL and the ALIVE Center discussed a piece of property they had acquired. 

Talk surrounded whether to use the space for apartment housing among other uses. Cunningham came into the issue wanting to establish a themed house for living, learning and community.

The $100 Solution is a service learning model used at WKU through the ALIVE Center for Community Partnerships. Bernard Strenecky, WKU scholar in residence, founded the program. Strenecky said he created The $100 Solution with the goal in mind that when a student goes to university it should be their duty to give back to the community.

“We have a responsibility to give back,” he said.

Strenecky said by using formal methodology and by giving students a small amount of money, problem solving can take place. He said students living in the house have made the conscious effort to give back to the WKU community as they act in the role of living the idea of giving back.

“What can they do to make, with the $100, WKU a better place to live and a better place to learn,” he said

Cunningham said that the house helps to emphasize the goal of The $100 Solution. She said students live in the house with a graduate assistant and work on projects together to determine community needs. The students work on a group project and individual projects that utilize their academic disciplines.

“They are currently working on one group project this semester,” she said.

The $100 Solution House is located on Chestnut Street. They are currently accepting applications for three open student slots for next semester.