Meet the Dorm Parents

Hun’s boarding community is like a second family. You’re surrounded by students from around the world who become your friends and confidantes, often for life. Hun’s dorm parents live on campus and are there to help you find your place and be your go-to when you need advice. They plan plenty of activities to get involved in, from yoga, crafts, and games to trips to Philadelphia or New York, to dinners in downtown Princeton. Here’s just some of the dorm parents you’ll meet during your time at Hun.
D. Connor Brennan

Mr. Connor Brennan has been at Hun since the fall of 2021, when he was hired as a one-year teaching fellow. He became part of the full-time History and Global Studies Department faculty the following year. He resides in Russell Hall and is the dorm head for Poe Dormitory as well as the assistant football coach and the JV baseball coach.

“Whether it’s dinner or study hall, I like being the go-to dorm parent when you’re on duty. During study hall, it’s nice to just check in with the kids on a regular basis. I usually post myself up in the second-floor lounge after I do the checks in the rooms. If they want, they can come and talk to me, and I think that’s a comforting thing. Hopefully, they feel like they can trust me and get some good advice on whatever they’re asking about.”

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Dara Martin

Ms. Dara Martin has been at Hun since August 2014 and currently serves as a member of the English Department faculty. She is also the director of Global and Immersion Programs and co-director of NextTerm. She lives in Global Commons with her daughter Devyn ’25.

“The dorm parent plays an integral role in helping students belong here. For those of us who live on campus, we want to be a part of the community. We want to be a part of the journey that kids have here. And it’s as simple as being willing to give a little of yourself and inviting kids into your world. That’s what distinguishes the good dorm parents from the great ones — it’s the ones who are willing to invest a little of themselves when they’re both on and off duty.”

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Jaime Gilligan with her dog Sawyer

Ms. Jaime Gilligan joined The Hun School of Princeton in the fall of 2019 and currently serves as an educational technology designer and the dorm head for Global Commons. She lives on campus with her dog Sawyer.

“I enjoy how the different dorms have different personalities. I am the dorm head for Global Commons, which generally houses older students, so many people from our dorm graduate at the end of the year. It brings a unique challenge to Global because you have to build community every year. While you can rely on the carryover from the work you’ve done the previous year, it’s also a really fun opportunity to let the dorm become something entirely new each year.”

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Dorm Parent Otis Douce

Mr. Otis Douce has been at Hun since 2013. He currently serves as the director of equity, inclusion, and global diversity, is a member of the executive board of the Cultural Competency Committee, and Senior Administrative Team. He lives on campus with his wife, Juana, and their two children.

“We’re anticipating some of the things that parents worry about most. We’re anticipating homesickness and when it’s going to be at its highest, and we program around that. We create programming that builds community, which helps students transition to boarding life. The other part of being a dorm parent is the responsibility. I have kids, so I understand that the person who’s most important to parents is here with us. We take that responsibility seriously because we understand there’s a large degree of trust that’s being transferred to us — and we want to earn it.”

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Meghan Poller at Hun

Ms. Meghan Kreger Poller graduated from Hun in 1995 and became a member of the staff in 2001. She currently serves as the chair of the Interdisciplinary Studies Department. She lives on campus with her husband, Mike, and her two sons, Sam and Joe ’26.

“When I first started, I thought my role was to help students be comfortable, but my role is [actually] to help them figure out how to be comfortable and to lean into any discomfort and get through it. A really special role for a dorm parent is to be a judgment-free person on campus that they can lean on, who’s not going to fix everything for them but will help them figure out how to move forward and be independent.”

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Jennifer Mitchell with her dog

Ms. Jennifer Mitchell has been at Hun since 1994 and is currently a member of the Modern Languages and Classics Department faculty and the director of International Student Programs. She has been a member of the resident faculty since 2006 and lives on campus with her youngest daughter, Gabby ’25. She also has two older daughters who are Hun alums.

“Currently, one of my favorite things about campus is What’s Happening Wednesdays. These kids come religiously every Wednesday at seven o’clock. It ranges from educational to funny — it could be as simple as trivia or bingo or a presentation on Turkey to who’s better: Rihanna or Beyonce, like a war of music. It’s become this real cultural piece of Hun.”


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