The name Spark Houses comes from the sparking of ideas, creativity, and relationships that start from the kindling provided by these social and intellectual hubs.

2013-2014 Spark Houses

ALLies House

Blue Note
Jazz House

Civil War Era
Studies House

Diaspora House



Funk House

German House

Hillel House

Middle East and
Islamic Studies House

Peace & Justice House

Public Policy House

Science House

Writing House

Spark House Characteristics

• Serve as a social and intellectual hubs for students, faculty, and staff.

• Connect academic departments, courses, College programs, and student clubs/organizations with a shared commitment to an interdisciplinary topic with an annual focus selected by house members.

• Provide an opportunity for deep involvement by the students in residence while also inviting the broader campus community to actively engage the interdisciplinary focus.

• Foster focused exploration, knowledge exchange, and respectful dialogue.

Spark House Program Requirements

Participate in Club Fair and Open House in the Fall

  • Plan and execute four programs each semester
    • At least three must be hosted at a college house
    • One must be a partner program with a spark house
    • One must be a partner program with a theme house
  • Meet with House Mentor monthly
  • Create one bulletin board in a first-year residence hall both semesters

Spark House Descriptions and Contacts

Bregenzer House

ALLies House
Bregenzer House

ALLies House is closely tied with the ALLies Club and the campus Safe Zone training program, and hosts most of the organizations meetings and events. ALLies raises awareness about social justice issues, queer life on campus, and LGBTQ issues at Gettysburg and in the world at large. In order to create an atmosphere not only of equality, but also one of safety, ALLies House maintains an open room for any student who may feel threatened because of their perceived gender/sexual orientation/identity, race, faith or lack thereof, or any other reason.

House Leader: Kaiden Krueger & Catherine Wisell
House Mentor: Erin Duran

Lau House

Blue Note Jazz House
Lau House

The Blue Note Jazz House is a unique community of students who both perform and appreciate jazz music. The Blue Note works in tandem with their affiliated club, Jazz Appreciation Society (JAS), to promote music, specifically jazz, throughout the Gettysburg College campus and surrounding community. The house is also closely related to the jazz program offered at the Sunderman Conservatory of Music. The only criterion for living in the house is participation in a college instrumental ensemble. By working with JAS and the Sunderman Conservatory the Blue Note provides performances, speakers, organized trips to local jazz concerts, and other jazz related events in order to facilitate interaction with music in a social and intellectual setting.

House Leaders: Jeff Binner & Alice Broadway
House Mentor: Dr. Buzz Jones


Civil War Era Studies House
Appleford Inn and Carriage House

Appleford Inn and Carriage House are the historic home to the Civil War Era Studies (CWES) House, the residential component to the academic minor program focused on the social, political, cultural and military aspects of the Civil War Era. Our community is made up of CWES minors, members of the Pennsylvania College Guard reenactors club or the Civil War Club, or those who are interested in the Civil War. In addition to Gettysburg undergrads, students visiting for the Gettysburg Semester program are also housed in the Appleford complex. More information is available at

House Leader: Sarah Johnson & Bryan Caswell
House Mentors: Brian Jordan & Cathy Bain


Diaspora House (D-House)
102 W. Water Street

The mission of Diaspora House is to promote, educate, and foster cultural diversity awareness of African diaspora, meaning the communities throughout the world that are descended from the historic movement of peoples from Africa. D-House works closely with the Intercultural Resource Center and other campus groups.

House Leaders: Ashley Fernandez & Jasmine Santana
House Mentor: Pete Curry


Corner Cottage

Our mission is three-fold:
1) To use food and agriculture as a catalyst to explore the connection between environmental issues and social justice issues and better understand our ability and responsibility to fuel the just sustainability movement.
2) To experiment with different methods of living a more sustainable lifestyle with the goal of making sustainable living in today's world accessible to all.
3) To create, educate, and support a community of socially and environmentally conscious individuals through experiential learning and direct engagement with the values of sustainable living.
More information is available at

House Leader: Betsy Atkinson & Sean Pethybridge
House Mentor: Dr. Salma Monani


Funk House: Connecting Campus Communities
Albaugh House

Funk House was originally founded to create a social alternative to Greek Life at Gettysburg. Today, the Funk House still provides a low-key atmosphere for students to come and meet people involved in different disciplines, organizations, and activities, while offering a place to simply hang out. The Funk House is not directly affiliated with a campus organization or department, as it may limit the ability to include everyone and provide a social outlet for our community.

House Leaders: Zachary Miller & Joshua Walker
House Mentor: Dr. Clif Presser

German House

German House
43 W. Middle Street

German House is connected with the German Studies department and provides a common space for immersion in German culture for language learners at multiple levels of fluency. In addition to serving the residents, German House also offers programs on campus.

House Leader: Elizabeth Topolosky
House Mentor: Dr. Kerry Wallach

Writing House

Hillel House
133-135 N. Washington Street

Hillel is intended to be a home-away-from-home for Jewish students at Gettysburg College. Hillel serves spiritual, cultural, and social needs for Jewish students and also introduces the campus to Jewish life. The group strives to build a close-knit community among Jewish college students while reaching out to the non-Jewish college community.

House Leader: Caroline Gordon
House Mentor: Kim Davidson


Middle East and Islamic Studies (MEIS) House
Writing House133-135 N. Washington Street

Middle East and Islamic Studies (MEIS) is a minor that enables students from any discipline to gain an understanding of a most critical part of the world: home to our oldest civilizations, cradle to three great monotheistic religions, and a most vital and dynamic focus of current events. The minor reflects the need to understand more about this region, the peoples who live there, and the ways that Islam has shaped societies around the world. MEIS House is an extension of the MEIS minor.

House Leader: Natalie Zink
House Mentor: Dr. Abdulkareem Said Ramadan
Peace House

Peace & Justice House
Carlisle House

Peace and Justice House is a community that promotes Human Rights around the world and on campus through its actions and relation with Amnesty International. Peace and Justice House prides itself on creating an atmosphere where students are able to be themselves and be accepting of others. Peace and Justice House works hand in hand with Amnesty International, Peace Club, and ALLies to promote Peace and Justice both in the United States and internationally. The students are not only a peaceful and positive influence on campus, but focus on issues of a global scale as well.

House Leader: Kyle Schrader & Danielle Hernandez
House Mentor: Dr. Lisa Portmess


Public Policy House at The Eisenhower Institute
Eisenhower Institute

The Public Policy House at the Eisenhower Institute is the residential extension of programs offered by the Eisenhower Institute and the Public Policy major. PPH@EI provides students opportunities to explore problem-solving in domestic and international arenas by learning firsthand from visiting experts, trips to Washington, DC, and diving into discussions about real issues.

House Leaders: Joshua DeLeon & Audrey Bowler
House Mentor: Dr. Bruce Larson & Jeffrey Blavatt

Science House
Lamp Post

The Science House is the residential component of the recent $1.3 million Howard Hughes Medical Institute grant that enhances the undergraduate student experience for science majors at Gettysburg. Science House will serve as an incubator for budding scientists and provide a common space for connecting ideas outside the classroom and hosting visiting lecturers and researchers.

House Leaders: Andrea Sitton & Alexa Riddle
House Mentor: Dr. Michael Wedlock

Hillel HouseWriting House
Smith House

Each year, eight students live in the Writing House, where they are exposed to a diversity of visitors, speakers, and activities. Students meet regularly with professors and professional writers who are interested in expression . . . both how it is realized and how it is received. Specific activities include dinners with nationally known writers, readings, and field trips to cultural events. The goal of The Writing House is to bring together students who share a common interest in writing. The forms of writing are varied, and include journalism, writing science, writing history, fiction writing, poetry writing, creative nonfiction, and dramatic writing.  Learn more about Writing House.

House Leaders: Erica LeFebvre & Emma Okell
House Mentor: Prof. Fred Leebron


Updated 1/27/2014