The Bantam Network was the result of a student competition introduced by President Joanne Berger-Sweeney in December 2014.

The Bantam NetworkFive teams of students—including Summit Scholars, President’s Fellows, and those nominated by the Dean of Students Office—were charged with designing mentoring networks that would strengthen the interaction of Trinity students with each other, the College, and the city of Hartford. After developing their individual concepts during the first six weeks of the spring 2015 semester, the teams presented them to a panel of judges; the winning team was announced at the President’s House in March 2015.

“Although the Bantam Network was the winning concept, we incorporated ideas from other proposals into the network that was ultimately implemented this fall,” explains Molly Thoms ’17, a Summit Scholar who was the leader of the original Bantam Network team and who assisted in developing the concept after the March presentation and through the summer. “Its intent is to unite students from thematically different first-year seminars into residentially based groups called ‘Nests’ that build camaraderie and bring many of the terrific resources that the College has to offer directly to new students starting with their first semester on campus.”

The Bantam NetworkNamed for persons, places, or objects of significance in Trinity’s history, the Nests are made up of 45 to 70 students who are enrolled in quartets or quintets of Trinity’s first-year seminars and who live together in dedicated residences. This arrangement is designed to foster scholastic engagement outside the classroom, a greater sense of community within the living spaces, civic engagement with Hartford, and school pride.

In doing so, the Bantam Network aims to connect students to their peers, creating an immediate sense of belonging and supporting them with tools and a network of academic and residential mentors who will inspire them to cultivate knowledge and equip them to succeed, both during their undergraduate experience and after graduating.

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