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First-ever resident assistants ready to lead

By Adam Ybarra, Resident Manager

We are excited to announce that our first group of Resident Assistants (RAs) have Adam Ybarra headshotbeen selected. This group of two women and three men will be the student leaders caring for and developing the JPII Newman community.

Josh Blum is a Papillion, NE native who will be a sophomore next year and studies Accounting. Gabe Larsen’s hometown is Lincoln, NE and studies architectural engineering. Gabe will be a junior this August. The rest of the incoming RAs will be seniors next fall.  Megan Stokebrand, from Dewitt, Nebraska is pursuing a degree in math. Sydney Svehla, of Lincoln, NE, is a student at the neighboring College of St. Mary and is studying occupational therapy, with a minor in special education. Phil Wier, from Wasta, SD is pursuing a degree in aviation-air transportation administration.

When asked about what he is most excited about, Gabe said that he can’t wait for the brand new building, the community life, and being a short walk from the chapel.

“I see the Newman Center as a community center,” Gabe said. “I hope to see and hear students who don’t necessarily live in the Newman Center come hang out and add to the community and culture that the building will provide.”

Megan is also excited about the sense of community that the Newman Center will bring. She can’t wait to meet her residents.

“I want to make sure that my residents feel like they can come to me with any issues and that I can help everyone to have a full year of growth and amazing memories,” Megan said.

Our friends at Boyd Jones Construction will complete construction on the main building in July, and our first group of residents will be welcomed this August. The St. John Paul II Oratory (chapel) will be completed in January, 2017. The JPII Newman Center is open to students of all faiths and provides a space for students to worship, build community, deepen their faith, participate in FOCUS Bible studies, engage in service opportunities, develop their leadership skills, and attend retreats.

The residence hall provides fully-furnished apartments with shared living spaces and individual bedrooms.  It also features an outdoor courtyard, community space, and meeting rooms. And yes, there will be free Wi-Fi and free laundry on each floor! We’re also walking distance from Baxter Arena, Aksarben Village, the Shoppes at Aksarben, and Stinson Park.


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