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CAT Communities

Residential CAT Community

What is a Residential CAT Community?

Residential CAT communities provide an added opportunity for first-year students to connect with others who share their academic interests by placing them in the same on-campus residence hall. Like our other CAT Communities, about 22 first-year students take a group of classes together, but they live, eat, sleep, study, and socialize near each other, too! Students in each CAT Community will live in the same hall, along with their Residential Learning Assistant.

If you are interested in enrolling in a Residential CAT Community, read through the different options on the page below, and then email us at kstatefirst@k-state.edu for more information! 

Here are some of the Residential CAT Communities we are planning for the fall of 2015! Click on the icons below for more information.  

American Story Icon The American Story

Ever wonder what life was like for average Americans from the colonial period through the end of the 19th century? Find out for yourself in this highly interactive course that combines classroom projects, field research and a hike along the Overland Trail to reveal not only the facts about periods in America's past, but the feel of life in those times as well. Keep a journal of your reactions to American novels and dramas, and discover the rich connections between American History and American Literature.  

Residence Hall: Moore

ENGL 270 American Literature

HIST 251 History of US to 1877

DAS 195 The American Story


APDesign APDesign Community

APDesign has a long-standing tradition of providing connection between building a foundation in design through Studio, learning about the rich and varied history of design through History of the Designed Environment, and exploring the diversity of the professions and career paths in Survey of Design Professions for all first-year students. The CAT Community will provide you with additional opportunities to get to know your ENVD classmates better, have dinner with a faculty member each week, and learn strategies to stay focused and motivated in your first year as an APDesign student.  

Residence Hall: Goodnow

ENDV 201 Environmental Design Studio 1

ENDV 250 History of the Designed Environment 1

ENDV 203 Survey of the Design Professions 1 (Section B)


Art of Hacking Culture The Art of Hacking Culture

Recently, artists like Matt Garcia (co-teacher of this course) have begun exploring ways to bring art into the world to create interactive experiences, engage communities, and create social and cultural change. Leveraging the insights of anthropology (the study of people and culture), we will examine ways in which people are using art, technology, and design to "hack" culture and create positive change. Together we will brainstorm, plan, develop, and ultimately implement a "culture hack" of our own as a class. The core project of this CAT community will be to "hack" the culture of education by creating our own prototype of a college, using ourselves as the first class. Out of the classroom events will include field trips to see "culture hacks" in action, as well as to implement our own culture hacks.

Residence Hall: Putnam 

ANTH 204 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

ART 300 New Media and Community Practice 

DAS 195 The Art of Hacking Culture


Be the Change Be The Change: Social Justice

Students in this CAT Community will explore themes of power, privilege and oppression in today's society through coursework and community outreach service projects. They will also develop the ability to think critically and creatively discuss social justice issues and solutions while evaluating strategies for social change.

Residence Hall: Moore 

SOCWK 100 Introduction to Social Work

AMETH 160 Introduction to American Ethnic Studies

DAS 195 Social Justice


Before the Crisis Before the Crisis: Public Health

Students will explore various health care opportunities available in our current society, the impact that health care has (locally, regionally, and globally), and ways in which students can begin to educate others and create preventive programs based on the understanding of a person in a societal context and through the lens of public health.

Residence Hall: Ford and Haymaker

SOCIO 211 Introduction to Sociology

MC 180 Fundamentals of Public Relations

DAS 195 Public Health and Society


Brain Games Brain Games: The Biology Behind Behavior

Discover how neuroscience--the biology of the brain, not only how it works but how it has evolved--results in human behaviors, from economic decisions to criminal choices. See how two seemingly different sciences are interrelated!

Residence Hall: Haymaker

PSYCH 110 General Psychology

BIOL 198 Principles of Biology

DAS 195 The Neuroscience of Behavior


Building the Future Engineering Community

Connect with other first-year engineering students taking Calculus I, Chemistry I, and the department specific Introduction to Engineering. Discover engineering applications relevant to engineering curriculum, chemistry, and calculus through problem-based learning, team-based collaborative learning, managing cognitive load, active diversity interaction, and growth choices. This CAT Community is for General (undecided) Engineering majors that are Calc I and Chem I ready.

Residence Hall: Goodnow

MATH 220 Analytic Geometry and Calculus 1

CHM 210 Chemistry 1

DEN 161 Engineering Problem Solving


First Scholars First Scholars

This CAT community will focus on empowering students with tools and resources to create a successful transition to college. Students will learn about themselves and others by learning how to analyze the social world and their place in it through self-reflection exercises. Personal leadership potential will be explored while students discover different resources and services available to them. This living learning community is only for first-generation first-year students selected to be part of the First Scholars program.

Residence Hall: Putnam

LEAD 212 Introduction to Leadership Concepts

SOCIO 211 Introduction to Sociology

LEAD 502 1st Gen 101: First Generation Transition Seminar  


Healthcare for the Heartland Healthcare for the Heartland: Rural Medicine

Utilize the knowledge and critical thinking skills developed through the coursework to look at your role as a rural health provider in a different way. Develop observational skills and "see" the subtleties of any interaction.

Residence Hall: Marlatt

BIOL 198 Principles of Biology

GERON 315 Introduction To Gerontology 

DAS 195 Rural Medicine


Making the Ultimate Playlist Making the Ultimate Playlist

Making the Ultimate Playlist: American Culture Revealed - Longfellow once famously wrote, "Music is the universal language of mankind." Drawing on this notion, our CAT Community approaches music as a cultural mirror to reveal how Americans have viewed their world and themselves through time. Students will create an "ultimate playlist" of recordings and videos to reflect the diversity, history, and values of American culture from its origins to today.

Residence Hall: Strong Community

ANTH 200 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

MUSIC 245 Introduction to American Music

DAS 195 American Culture Revealed


Next Generation Journalism Next Generation Journalism

Students will examine the next generation of journalism, including new business models and innovative ideas. They will learn from successful and unsuccessful journalism startups and discuss how the digital era has and will continue to move journalism onto a stage that is dynamic, mobile, and digital.

Residence Hall: Moore 

MC 110 Mass Communications in Society

ENTRP 340 Introduction to Entrepreneurship

DAS 195 Next Generation Journalism


Psychology of Prejudice Psychology of Prejudice

Students will examine stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination broadly, including field observations as these manifest in media and everyday social interactions. They will also complete a novel research project using psychological/sociological research methods to answer a research question related to stereotypes, prejudice, or discrimination. Some class time will be devoted to strategies for maximizing opportunities for success in college. 

Residence Hall: Goodnow

PSYCH 110 General Psychology

SOCIO 211 Introduction to Sociology

DAS 195 Psychology of Prejudice


Strengths Strengths

Strengths is a living learning community for first-generation, first-year students. Discover what you do best and learn how to use those talents to make your college experience rewarding and successful. In this positive and engaging learning community, you will study the importance of good leadership and the links between your own strengths and your social world.

Residence Hall: Derby Community

LEAD 212 Introduction to Leadership Concepts

SOCIO 211 Introduction to Sociology

LEAD 502 Strengths

For more information about the Strengths CAT Community, check out the informational flyer.


Sustainability Sustainability and You

Sustainability and You: People, Planet, and Profit - We each make thousands of decisions each day, some big and potentially life-changing and others small and routine. But have you ever seriously considered how those decisions may impact the lives and well-being of others or the condition of the planet? This CAT Community introduces concepts of the "triple bottom line" and "circles of sustainability" to help students think more critically about the consequences of their actions--both intended and unintended--and to better understand complex social, environmental, and economic issues.

Residence Hall: Marlatt

ECON 110 Principles of Macroeconomics

GEOG 221 Introduction to Physical Geography (with corresponding lab)

DAS 195 People, Planet, and Profit


Talking Physics Talking Physics

Do you dread speaking in front of an audience? Do you think physics is a mysterious force that would be best left alone to Star Trek nerds? Why not overcome your dismay and conquer public speaking and physics in your first semester at K-State. In a supported atmosphere with other first year students, you will be able to take on these rigorous general education courses through faculty interaction, residence hall programs, cultural and academic programs, and structured peer tutoring.

Residence Hall: Boyd and Putnam

PHYS 113 General Physics 1

COMM 105 Public Speaking 1A

DAS 195 Taking the Mystery Out of Physics


What Not to Wear What Not to Wear: The Psychology of Fashion

Students will explore the underlying motivations as to why people choose to wear the clothes they wear and the influence an individual's clothing has on both him or herself as well as on other people. They will also discuss the meanings individuals link to dress, the relationship between personality and fashion, how clothing choices affect our self-perception, moods and emotions, and how clothing influences the perceptions/impressions of others.

Residence Hall: Ford and Haymaker

AT 245 Apparel and Textile Industry

PSYCH 110 General Psychology

DAS 195 The Psychology of Fashion


World Makers World-Makers: Social Entrepreneurship 

Become inspired by people who have identified significant problems or opportunities in the world and leveraged them to create real, positive change. Identify new opportunities and solutions to critical problems, and gain key skills, know-how and core processes for putting those ideas into action.

Residence Hall: Marlatt

ANTH 204 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

ENTRP 340 Introduction to Entrepreneurship

DAS 195 World-Makers: Social Entrepreneurship



In a Residential CAT Community, first-year students:

•Take two general education courses and one connections course with the same 22 students

•Are housed in the same Residence Halls

•Have the opportunity to work with an undergraduate Residential Learning Assistant, who lives just down the hall and offers academic and social support

•Work with awesome faculty members, both in class and in Residence Hall sponsored events, such as our faculty lecture series.

•Participate in social and educational activities related to shared interests.

Is a Residential CAT Community for you?

The Residential Community may be a good fit for you if...

•You are looking for a first-year college experience that will maximize academic and social opportunities, through both a community of dedicated students and talented family

•You are interested in the classes and themes of this year’s Residential CAT Community offerings

•You wish to reserve a space in one of our popular on campus Residence Halls

If you have any questions, please e-mail us at kstatefirst@k-state.edu

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Interested in our Residential CAT Communities, but can't decide on just one? Take our Buzzfeed quiz to find out which CAT Community might be right for you!

  • Click HERE to take the quiz!