Undergraduate Student Life in the College

STUDENT LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT

Department Website: https://www.vanguard.edu/student-life/campus-life

The Department of Student Affairs exists to shape campus culture, promote community, and foster student success.  Programs and services are designed to create a seamless learning environment to assist students in all areas of personal growth, including their adjustment to university life.

The Four-Year Discipleship Plan (FYDP) is the foundation for Vanguard University's co-curricular educational programs and services.  The FYDP was designed to create a dynamic partnership with Vanguard's academic programs.  Inside and outside of the classroom, the University seeks to foster an atmosphere and promote learning opportunities that shape students into dynamic and well-rounded followers of Jesus.  To that end, Student Affairs and other co-curricular departments promote holistic development of students in a manner that furthers Vanguard's mission of cultivating Spirit-empowered, Christ-centered leaders.

The FYDP is comprised of seven educational domains, which guide the programming of Student Affairs, along with the Office of Global Education & Outreach and Career Services.  Every co-curricular department works together to create services and events that provide education within each domain over the course of four years.

STUDENT HOUSING

Department Website: https://www.vanguard.edu/student-life/residence-life

The University provides housing for traditional undergraduate students. Because Vanguard University is primarily a residential University, all single freshman and sophomore students less than 21 years of age are required to live in university-owned housing unless they are residing with a parent or legal guardian. Additionally, on and off campus students are not permitted to live with members of the opposite sex other than their spouse and/or sibling (as long as sibling does not have another roommate of same gender).  Balboa, Catalina, Huntington, Laguna and Newport Halls come furnished with an extra-long twin bed, mattress, desk, chair, and a shared dresser.  Vanguard Center apartments are only guaranteed to be furnished with an extra-long twin bed, mattress and a refrigerator.  Students will need to provide their own linens, towels, blankets, pillow, and bedspread.  Residence rooms are designed for double, triple, or quadruple occupancy.  The Residence Life program is supervised by the Director of Residence Life, and each residence facility is under the supervision of a professional Resident Director or Resident Coordinator and student Resident Assistants.

The University reserves the right to hold periodic room inspections of the residence areas without advance notice. The residence areas are closed during Christmas break, with the exception of the off-campus apartments at Vanguard Center. The right of occupancy does not include Christmas Break. Additional information regarding Residence Life is located in the Student Handbook.

ELIGIBLITY TO PARTICIPATE

Broad participation is encouraged in the many student activities Vanguard University provides. Eligibility to participate in all co-curricular activities is determined in part by the student’s educational record.

SPIRITUAL FORMATION: CHAPEL

Department Website: https://www.vanguard.edu/student-life/spiritual-formation

Based on the core values of Vanguard University: Truth - Virtue - Service, the VU Spiritual Formation Department seeks the development of students in the following areas:

  • TRUTH: To help students grow in their Knowledge of Scripture and be able to apply eternal life principles in their daily lives (John 8:31).
  • VIRTUE: To help students develop in Spiritual Maturity by engaging in various spiritual practices and disciplines that point them toward a life of wholeness in Christ (Ephesians 4; Galatians 5).
  • SERVICE: To encourage students to engage in Spirit Empowered Leadership so they may demonstrate their faith in Jesus through works of service and servant leadership (Acts 1:4-8; Romans 12; Ephesians 2:8-10).

VU Chapel is a gathering place where students and other VU community members are able to come together to glorify Jesus through worship music, while also receiving spiritual blessing and instruction through the teaching and preaching of the Bible. Jesus said in Matthew 26:41 (NLT), “Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak!” A willing spirit and heart are key distinctives for spiritual development and integration in the Vanguard community. In partnership with the local church, the VU Spiritual Formation Department seeks to help guide students in their discipleship and formation as followers of Jesus, but does not exist to replace local church communities.  VU Chapel is not intended to be “The Church,” but The Church/the people of God gather together to worship Jesus and learn from His word in VU chapel settings. Students are encouraged to invest and serve in a local church community of their choosing. In addition to over 100 online partial and Alternative chapel credits that are offered by SFD and numerous other VU departments through the course of the semester, core Spiritual Formation VU Chapels include, but are not limited to the following opportunities:  

  • Monday Night Excavate
  • Morning VU Chapel worship gatherings Tuesday through Thursday
  • Commuter Chapel
  • La Capilla
  • Bible studies, Pastoral Care meetings, Small Groups, Servant Leadership and special ministry events in partnership with VU departments or outside Christian outreach organizations.

Chapel participation is first an opportunity for spiritual maturation and secondly a purpose driven requirement for all undergraduate students, as mandated by the University Board of Trustees with the intent of facilitating spiritual vitality and growth. Chapel attendance is recorded, and each student should monitor their attendance to ensure that they meet their requirement.  The purpose of this type of chapel accountability is to continually emphasize the importance of spiritual development during each student’s time at Vanguard.  To neglect the spiritual part of our development is to neglect a core part of our human experience. For that reason, Vanguard maintains chapel involvement as a requirement for the student experience—and we take seriously this aspect of each student’s experience and education.  If a student does not meet their chapel attendance expectations, there will be disciplinary actions in the form of additional fines, as instituted by the University and possibly further academic and/or co-curricular restrictions.  It is our hope that students will thoroughly review their options as communicated from the Spiritual Formation office via email correspondence. The opportunity to glorify Jesus and learn from His Word together in VU Chapel is an amazing communal experience to be celebrated at Vanguard University!

STUDENT GOVERNMENT AND STUDENT ORGANIZED PROGRAMMING

Department Website: 

Vanguard University endorses and practices self-government by students. The Student Government Association (SGA) works within the larger context of the University community, its values, and objectives. Specifically, student government is a means to promote spiritual and academic vitality and growth. The SGA serves as a liaison between students and administration, staff and faculty, providing a means for discussion and solution of student issues. All members of the student body are supported by SGA and can vote in elections for the SGA President and Executive Vice President. Also, students may vote for specific candidates running for SGA House of Representative positions that align with their respective demographic group, such as candidates running to represent a residence hall or academic major. For more information about SGA elections, and to review the updated SGA Constitution, please visit https://vanguardsga.com/.

The Program Board is an organization designed to promote various student activities and campus traditions. The Program Board plans and promotes student activities, provides leadership training opportunities, and encourages a healthy, active student culture. The Program Board is a part of the Office of Student Engagement (OSE), is advised by the Associate Dean of Students and reports to the Vice President of Student Affairs and Campus Operations.

In addition, there are many co-curricular organizations, activities on campus, and numerous student clubs.  For information about student club formation contact the Associate Dean of Students at ext. 5253.

STUDENT PUBLICATIONS

Department Website: 

The Vanguard Voice is a student publication of campus news and information of interest to the University community. Students who are interested in journalism and are enrolling for the journalism course are afforded excellent opportunities for development by joining the newspaper staff. The Vanguard Voice is overseen by the Department of English.

CAMPUS RECREATION AND INTRAMURAL SPORTS

Department Website: 

Recreational and intramural sport opportunities are offered through Vanguard University Recreation (VU Rec), which is a division of the Office of Student Engagement (OSE).  VU Rec provides the Vanguard community opportunities to live a healthy, active lifestyle and promotes personal development through physical activity, sport leagues and tournaments, and outdoor experiences.  VU Rec offers a variety of opportunities for participants to find an activity they enjoy, including softball, soccer, volleyball, flag football, basketball, dodge ball, ultimate Frisbee, spike ball, badminton, and many more. VU Rec also oversees the student fitness center, open recreation time in the gymnasium, open turf time on the soccer field, as well as hikes and guided outdoor trips.  For more information regarding intramural sports and recreation, please email vurec@vanguard.edu.

MUSICAL ORGANIZATION AND EVENTS

Department Website: 

The NASM-accredited Music Department at Vanguard University sponsors many musical organizations on campus including the University Concert Choir, University Women’s Chorus, Vanguard Singers and Band, University Orchestra, Jazz Ensemble, Concert Band, Chamber Music, and Barbershop and Beautyshop Quartets. Most of these performing ensembles represent the university at churches, schools, conferences, and conventions; travel on out-of-state and international tours; and make professional recordings. Recent tours and opportunities have included Germany, Czech Republic, Argentina, Philippines, and Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in New York City. Membership in these musical ministry organizations is open to all undergraduate and graduate students by audition and interview.

The Department also presents two major concerts each year—at Christmas and in the spring semester. Various musical groups on campus participate in these two presentations. Concerts, recitals, and special events are offered regularly on campus by faculty, students, and guest artists.

THEATRE ARTS

Department Website: 

Vanguard University’s Department of Theatre is accredited with the National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST).  The Department produces five main stage shows plus a Senior Showcase by our graduating seniors each year, as well as a non-mainstage piece in the fall and a student directed one-act in the spring semester.  Popular Demand, the sketch comedy-improv team, performs twice a month.  The Department is also active in the annual Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival and provides dance performance opportunities with the Vanguard Theatre Arts Dance Team.  The American Coast Theater Company (ACTC) operates in the summer on-campus as VU’s resident professional theatre company, offering professional internships to our students.  Students also assist in operating the American Coast Children’s Theatre. The Department has developed corporate relationships and opportunities for community outreach that can result in professional, paid performances. Majors can also participate in the Department’s weekly Theatre Chapel where they can lead worship and get involved in Bible study and group discussions. The Theatre Arts degree offers concentrations in Musical Theatre, Stage & Screen Acting/Directing, or Technical/Design. Students can pursue a Liberal Arts degree with an emphasis in Theatre Arts.  A Theatre minor is also available.