Students in Service and Leadership at Harvard

Dorm Crew - Blueprint of Action

Motivation for Research

As I reflect on these past four years, I have come to realize the incredible impact that Dorm Crew has had on my college experience. As a senior leaving the Harvard community, I can only hope to give back to an organization that has given so much to me. 

Research Question 

The question I aimed to address over the course of the semester is—How to improve the recognition and visibility of Dorm Crew on campus? This proposed question has various components that I used as focus points for answering this overarching question. The components I have addressed include:

  1. Understand the general student body perceptions/attitudes towards Dorm Crew (via survey)
  2. Understand Dorm Crew captain's and member's perceptions/attitudes towards Dorm Crew (via survey)
  3. Compile anecdotal evidence of personal experiences to aid in the transformation of perceptions around Dorm Crew and improve visibility (video compilation)

1. Understanding External Perspectives  
     The first component is focused on gaging the on-campus, general student body’s perspective of on-campus employment opportunities as well as their specific understandings surrounding Dorm Crew. To measure this, I launched a comprehensive survey across all twelve upperclassman house email-lists. The survey was designed to gather a firm understanding of the underlying beliefs held by students not involved in the Dorm Crew community. 

2. Understanding Internal Perspectives 
     The second component was focused on the internal perspectives and opinions of Dorm Crew members. I surveyed the captains and members of the Dorm Crew community through the Dorm Crew email-list. This survey looked fairly similar to the survey sent to the general student body, however, it also included important questions regarding personal experiences, allowing space for qualitative analysis of first-hand Dorm Crew involvement.

3. Promoting Visibility and Recognition - Video Compilation
     The final component focused on promoting the unique benefits and experiences of Dorm Crew through a video compilation of various members and captains. This video was intended to be a space for Dorm Crew members to share their personal views and experiences to help improve the visibility and recognition across campus. Students interested in participating in the final video sent in a short video blurb of their Dorm Crew experience. I then put these videos together to form a final compilation film that can be used to spread the word about the positive nature and culture of the Dorm Crew community.


Ethical Conduct

         Informed consent begins with the recruitment of participants and continues through the subject’s involvement. The survey itself was completely anonymous and included a couple of demographic questions at the end. I included a statement of consent in the survey launch email to ensure that participants understand that this survey is both anonymous and optional.
         For participants interested in contributing to the video compilation (as indicated through the survey), I sent a detailed email including specific information about the study and how their video will be featured. I was sure to offer space for any questions to ensure that the participant was fully aware of the process. I did not pressure or sway the potential participant in their decision. Finally, I obtained a written consent from each of the participating individuals to ensure that the inclusion of their video into the final compilation was consensual.



         I understand and recognize that as a captain of Dorm Crew, my unique and personal experiences have shaped this research inquiry and therefore may influence aspects of the study, such as data collection and interpretation. My experience in Dorm Crew has been overwhelmingly positive and I acknowledge that this is not the case for everyone. Therefore, in order to diminish potential confirmation bias in my survey and beyond, I plan to actively tend to my biases as well as have my survey protocol reviewed by my teacher and peers prior to launching.  


This page has paths: