Program Houses

Program housing is a unique new living option offered to sophomores, juniors, and seniors at Niagara University. It gives students the opportunity to live collectively in a house based on shared hobbies, experiences, cultural interests and identities. It also supports the creation of interwoven communities of interest that otherwise would not be as connected.

The program houses are not only tied to an academic department or student organization, but also very often provide outreach to the greater Buffalo-Niagara community. The primary goal of each program house is to provide unique educational and cultural, campus inclusive programming. Each program house maintains a direct connection to a faculty advisor who assists with student and house/campus program development.

Additional Information

Questions about program house programming should be directed to Dr. Dave Reilly at dreilly@niagara.edu. Questions about program house housing policies should be directed to Kim Fenton at kfenton@niagara.edu.

Learn More About Our Program Houses

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Dave Reilly, Department of Political Science

Taking inspiration from St. Francis of Assisi, the residents of this house share a commitment to compassionate coexistence with all animals and the promotion of humane habitats. We believe the current ecological crisis threatening the stability of our environment today is directly related to deep-seated social problems, and that the arena in which our planet’s future will be decided is undoubtedly a social one. Therefore, our house community is created with the explicit intent of challenging traditional social structures and replacing them with new, creative and egalitarian alternatives.

We strive to commit ourselves to a community based on love, peace, sustainability, cooperative communalism and human values, as opposed to one based on concern for material goods. Earth House is created as a safe, open and respectful space to connect political action with the culture and philosophy of environmentalism through a diversity of approaches.

We aim to espouse the values and principles of social ecology, deep ecology and eco-feminism as well as support each other in our experimentation and education with regard to environmentalism; to learn, to teach, to inspire, and to act as a resource for these issues on campus. We strive to achieve sustainability in all realms of life and practice an environmentally conscious lifestyle.

Proposed Programming Examples

  • Raised Bed Gardening, a collection of gardens to be created and maintained by the house residents
  • Buffalo and Rochester VegFests
  • WildLIFE Festival
  • Outdoor Opportunities: Hikes and Camping
  • Tour of Love Canal with EPA
  • Motor Island Restoration with the Army Corps of Engineers
  • Native Conceptions of Environment, Animals, and Coexistence: Tuscarora Nation
  • Visit to EarthShip Houses—Marilla and Alden, N.Y.
  • Tours of Silo City, Outer Harbor, and Other Regional Sites with Permaculturalists and Native Plants Ecologists 
  • Field Trip: Cornell Cooperative Extension Programs

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Chris Lee, Department of Political Science

The residents of this house will explore historical social justice movements, peace movements and strategies of resistance and advocacy to understand their relevance to modern-day activism. They will explore the connections between social responsibility, Catholic teachings and direction action.

Students will investigate total liberation strategies that are holistic and intersectional and committed to dismantling all forms of domination and exploitation such as patriarchy, racism, heterosexism, cissexism, disablism, ageism, speciesism and ecological domination. Residents will engage in education and advocacy for social justice and connect with local, regional, and national organizations that share our goals.

Proposed Programming Examples

  • Engagement with Volunteer Lawyers Project on Amnesty and Immigration initiatives
  • Partnering with Buffalo Anti-Racism Coalition
  • Visit to Attica State Prison, Wende Correctional Institute
  • PUSH Buffalo events
  • Volunteering for the Subversive Theatre
  • Collaboration with the WNY Peace Center
  • Speakers
  • Films
  • Outreach to student social justice groups at other regional campuses
  • Monthly dinner and discussion with faculty advisor
  • A monthly program led by faculty, staff and community members that presents individual life stories about activism, expression and culture