An Undergraduate Residential Community of Scholars

"The best thing is the WiSE Learning Community. I love it. Here, my roommate is in the same classes as I am - so we are on the same wavelength when it comes to homework and studying. Also, I can just walk down the hall and talk to almost anyone about problems in chemistry or engineering or calculus."

What is the Be-WiSE Living-Learning Community?

The Women in Science and Engineering (WiSE) Living-Learning Community provides a supportive opportunity for women majoring in an array of science, technology, engineering, and math disciplines (STEM). The Be-WiSE LLC, first offered for the 1996-97 school year, is the oldest academic learning community at the UI and has been a model program for developing other learning communities on campus, not just because we do a great job supporting learning but because we also have a ton of FUN!

As part of the Be-WiSE Learning Community, you'll have the opportunity to:

  • Live in an unique, supportive LLC setting with women in a variety of STEM disciplines
  • Attend presentations on academic involvement, research opportunities, as well as career exploration
  • Engage in community service and volunteer opportunities with other WiSE Women
  • Socialize with other WiSE Women while decorating cookies, painting pumpkins, or making crafts
  • Interact with K-12 students, community members, and corporate sponsors by taking part in activities organized by WiSE

Who lives in the Be-WiSE LLC?

First-year Students: All first-year women intending to major in a science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) field can live in the Be-WiSE LLC. New students have the advantage of living in Burge Residence Hall on the east side of campus close to most first-year science and engineering classes, with upper-level students who have already successfully completed their first year of academic coursework. It's like living with your own personal support system right next door!

Second- and Third-year Students: Approximately one-third of the LLC residents are second- and third-year students. Typically these students were in the Be-WiSE LLC as first-years themselves. Upper-level students who remain in the Be-WiSE LLC are well prepared to help with the academic, social, and emotional transition first-year students face when coming to a major university campus.

How do I apply?

First-year Students: Incoming first-year students must request the Be-WiSE Learning Community on the UI Housing Application. To be eligible you must have declared a major in one of the WiSE-eligible departments or have designated an interest in one of the pre-professional programs such as pre-med, pre-pharmacy, etc.  In order to indicate your interest in the Be-WiSE LLC, you must submit a short essay which can be found within the general Housing application. Priority consideration will be given to incoming students who apply before May 1. For more information on application procedures, contact the UI Housing Office.

Second- and Third-year Students: Students who lived in the LLC the previous year have first priority for the second- and third-year openings in the Be-WiSE LLC. The WISE office will communicate with the current residents during the school year to take requests. Participation in Be-WiSE LLC activities are considered when reapplying. Transfer students who are interested in joining the Be-WiSE LLC must contact UI Housing to request admission to the LLC.

What happens after I apply?

After University Housing has received your application and determines that you are eligible for the Be-WiSE LLC, you will be notified of your acceptance via email in mid-late June. You will need to respond via an online form if you will accept your placement in the Be-WiSE LLC or not.  Incoming students who are not initially accepted will have the option of being on the waitlist for the community. In mid-June, students who have a spot in the Be-WiSE LLC will receive information about selecting a room in the community through the online Housing portal. This information will come from the Contracts & Assignments Office in University Housing. Students who are on the wait list should stay in touch with UI Housing to receive updates on their status.


Click here to learn more about Living-Learning Communities at Iowa!