Woodland Community College students were greeted with a flurry of activities and excitement during the Spring semesters first week of instruction, including information booths, free food and music, basketball, tobacco education, and book assistance.
“We might be a small college, but we can offer a lot,” said Annette Krezman, Student Assistant to Student Services, one of the key coordinators of Welcome Week. Krezman and Shirley Evans, Secretary to the Dean of Student Services, organized the information booths in the 100 building near registration.
From 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday, Krezman and Evans provided brochures and fliers for surviving and funding community college, maps and directions to classrooms and buildings, information about fee waivers and postings of course cancellations and changes, and they had sign up sheets for campus clubs.
Thursday, January 25, Krezman held a Welcome Week Munchies Event from 11:45- 1:00 pm in the Student Lounge, offering free chili, nachos and punch while Red Bull gave away free energy drinks. Over 100 students participated, all to the beats of WCC Student Nathan Lugo, “DJ Rhino.”
“We want to make certain students know we care about them,” said Dean of Student Services, Dr. Stacey Cook. She explained that they tried to prevent long lines by answering quick questions at the info-booths and directing students to counseling services and financial aid, as well as the many other student services on campus.
Such services include the Extended Opportunity Program & Services (EOP&S) and the C.A.R.E Program, the Disabled Student Program & Services (DSPS), the Tutoring Center and CalWORKS.
The main focus of Welcome Week is to welcome new and returning students in a friendly environment, said Cook. “We want to make sure that students are aware of services available on campus that are especially for them-services that are designed to help them succeed.”
Devin Rodriguez, WCC campus student services specialist, said the Welcome Week is very important for students. “New students get involved in college. It makes the first week exciting.” Rodriquez said students were even selling their own books in the student lounge.
Tobacco Education was offered to the campus community during the Welcome Week as well. Cay Strode, English Professor and a member of the WCC Site Council, publicized WCC’s Tobacco Free environment with a display case and contacted Steven Jensen to provide an abundance of resources for smokers who would like to quit.
Jensen, Health Program Coordinator for the Yolo County Health Department Tobacco Education and Cessation and also a WCC Adjunct Faculty Member, educated students about second-hand smoke, the health effects of tobacco, tobacco campaigns, and offered a variety of games, activities and a 20-foot mobile classroom.
Representatives from Sacramento State University, University of California, Davis, and Bank of America also had booths set up on campus, and the Short-Term Emergency Aid Committee (STEAC) were on campus two days financially assisting low-income students with purchasing books.
What did students think of Welcome Week? “Dynamite comes in small packages and we have a lot to offer,” exclaimed WCC Student Eric Puleo-Coats. He said Welcome Week was a nice gesture, and that his favorite part was the basketball. “It shows the college is there to help in any way they can,” said Puleo-Coats. He expressed that Welcome Week was a huge benefit for new students because there was so much information available
Dr. Cook hopes to have more student participation and ideas, as well as assistance in getting the word out about future Welcome Weeks. Although the main goal is to give students information about services and academic programs, Cook said she hopes to “broaden” what is already being done by involving more faculty and community businesses.
Cook also wants to emphasize committees that want student representation, such as the Safety Committee, Site Council, Commencement Planning and Diversity Project Team.