Welcome Week brings students together: introduces new programs and expanded services
Stress, nerves and even intimidation can accompany college students during their first days of class.
To help students feel more at ease on the Texas A&M-San Antonio University campus, a Welcome Week events and activities began on August 27. Departments across campus, from International Affairs to the University Police, contributed in welcoming students attending the fall 2018 semester.
Couldn’t make it? See the highlights below for an inside look of A&M-San Antonio’s Welcome Week:
Employers seek candidates at Job Fair
On Tuesday, employers set up tables in the first floor of the Central Academic Building to help interested students get set up on Handshake.com, the new online Student Employment Guide.
Gainful employment is the ultimate goal of college students and the reason most work so hard to get through school quickly. But most students need to work while they are in school, so A&M-San Antonio hosts a career fair during Welcome Week to help match employers with students seeking employment.
Jerry Gonzalez, marketing sophomore and Mays Center student worker, said the career fair offers students access to both on-campus and off-campus employment opportunities. Employers set up tables on the first floor of the Central Academic Building and were available to help interested students get set up on Handshake.com, the new Student Employment Guide.
“We have an educators fair, a graduate fair and a professional school fair too. And it’s all found on Handshake.com,” Gonzalez said.
Karen Ivy, career services director, said the best part about Handshake.com is that it provides students with an easy and fast way to find jobs, right here within the university.
One campus organization represented at the career fair was the First Year Experience Mentoring Program. Andrew Sandoval, English senior and peer mentor coordinator, said the group is currently looking to fill a few student worker positions.
“Recently our office split into two programs, First year Experience and Transition,” Sandoval said. “And we’re looking for mentors for the First Year Experience program now.”
If you were unable to attend the career fair this week, stop by the Mays Center for Experiential Learning & Community Engagement in suite 111 of the Science and Technology building for assistance with career services and employment search assistance. They are also available to help with logging into Handshake.com, the new student employment guide.
You can also do your own search by opening a browser and going directly to tamusa.joinhandshake.com/login (Google Chrome is recommended). Select JagWire Login to use your A&M-SA student login credentials. For questions call (210) 784-1356 or email: MaysCenter@tamusa.edu.
President’s Picnic ‘brings us together’
English senior Estela Gonzales attended Wednesday’s President’s Picnic, meandering between various student organization booths, community resources and picked up free giveaways.
As Gonzales took a break in the shade she said that campus events like these are important for students to learn more about their campus.
“It gives us a chance to meet one another and to get know the different organizations and businesses,” she said.
English sophomore Victoria Leyva agreed. “It brings everyone together and it also lets us interact with the staff, administrators and other students.”
As classes came to an end for the lunch hour, students stopped by booths to get free raspas, Jaguar and Whataburger gear and some booths offered games such as archery and spin-the-wheel for prizes.
For the picnic the courtyard was converted into a park-like ambiance. The sun was shining, music was playing and tents and tables were set to accommodate everyone.
Students agreed the event was a great opportunity to meet President Cynthia Teniente-Matson, administrators and their fellow peers.
Gonzales said she was excited to have the opportunity to meet President Matson and be photographed with her. As students saw Matson approaching and heading their way some became timid and others became excited, especially when she asked to take a picture with them.
Gonzales was glad to have been in her power wheelchair in order to participate in the President’s Picnic. Unfortunately, last year she was unable to participate since she was in her manual wheelchair.
The President’s Picnic takes place once a year on the first Wednesday of each fall semester. This is President Matson’s third picnic and the Office of the President collaborated with the department of Student Activities for this interactive event to take place on the A&M-San Antonio campus.
Coffee And Donuts With Cops
Four years ago when the University Police Department held their very first Coffee And Donuts With Cops, they only needed three dozen donuts to lure passing students. As the university continues to expand more students stop by for complimentary donuts and to speak with the officers.
On Tuesday, officers said they handed out 16 dozen donuts to students giving them a chance to speak one-on-one about classes, campus life, as well as promoting services UPD offers.
Displayed behind the officers were rows of donuts and fresh coffee, alongside a poster with images of events hosted and services offered by the department. The event was light and filled with humor as the officers discussed their department and assisted students who were new to the campus.
Officer Karen Tucker Engel informed students about events hosted during Welcome Week such as Operation ID and Safe Zone. Officers reminded students that through Safe Walk escorts for students who don’t feel comfortable walking on campus or to their vehicles were available. They also encourage students to use the non-emergency dispatch or use the emergency intercoms located within the parking lots.
Officer Gerardo Duran, a member of the Special Response Team, a group of officers S.W.A.T and Alert certified for high-risk situations assist in patrolling One University Way to ensure students’ safety as they exercise and walk to campus.
“We do this for y’all,” said Officer Duran.
University Police Department will offer other training throughout the semester such as Rape Aggression Defense and Safety Begins With You. Officer Engel also wanted to let organizations know they offered safety presentations for clubs and organizations.
“We’ll design it together to what they feel is best for the organization or group depending on the situation,” said Officer Engel.