It’s inevitable. This week, a student will walk into an anthropology classroom expecting biology, another will be running around to find the closest bathroom, and someone else will try to find the Office of Parking and Transportation to contest their fresh parking ticket. In any scenario, take a deep breath and keep an eye out for the “Wag Pack” representatives, experienced students who welcome students and direct them to where they need to go.
“Just look for our t-shirts”, said Arthur Montejano, the Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity Beta Nu Vice President and team leader of the Welcome and Guidance (WAG) Pack. Montejano co-leads the group and oversees 35 students who have volunteered themselves this semester to ease the minds of lost students.
“We did lots of recruiting,” said Montejano, which accounts for the higher numbler of volunteers this year.
A training day was organized on August 16 to ensure that members were ready for the large influx of students about to fill the campus.
“We walked around campus and refreshed our memories about where buildings were,” said Elizabeth Lopez, a team member who welcomed students to the Campus Housing Barbecue last Friday.
“We give [students] support”, said Marina Aguilera. “We went through the training to figure out how to help and greet lost people.”
This is only the second WAG Pack, said Josh Edrington, Leadership Development and Activities Advisor. Before WAG Pack, there was Welcome Week.
“Welcome Week was coordinated by the staff in the Student Involvement Office separately from Dog Days and included events such as Clubs & Orgs Day, Convocation, USU Open House, and Student Services Day,” said Edrington. After operating for years in this format we decided to make a change.”
According to Edrington, Welcome Week needed reformatting to make it clear that it was a continuation of Dog Days, the orientation for freshman and transfer students, and not entirely separate events. It also was to streamline the goal of the program.
“We were throwing a lot of information at new and returning students during the first week,” said Edrington. “[We realized] students were more focused on trying to figure out where their classes were located, where they were going to live, where they could find work, etc.”
The program receives funding that goes toward member training, materials and supplies. “[They are] handed out at Fresno State Welcome events, equipment, and WAG Pack t-shirts which help new students identify who WAG Pack members are,” said Edrington.
The WAG Pack team has increased in size this year, from 22 to 35 members in the team and Edrington welcomes the extra amount of members to better serve students.
“This year we would like the WAG Pack to be involved with welcome events throughout the entire 2010-11 academic year.
There will be Welcome Booths in several locations on campus the first week of classes from Monday, August 23 through Thursday, August 26 from 7:30 am to 10:30 am. Check out the full list of events that WAG pack will take part in this semester.