When I was in my first semester at ULM, I was welcomed with free food, games and a lot of other events organized by CAB, SGA, Chi Alpha and other registered student organizations at our university.
Even though I was away from my home and in a new environment, I felt welcomed and at home.
The week of welcome during the beginning of the semester was one of the best times I had at ULM.
I was expecting the same for the spring semester of 2020. But this time the RSOs didn’t do much to welcome the students and they could have done better.
Every semester at ULM usually starts with the events organized by the RSOs in ULM which students really enjoy.
Despite having over 150 RSOs in ULM only a few of them had events for all students. Most RSOs either did nothing at all or they had meetings which are exclusively for the members of the organization.
By having events for students it helps them feel comfortable and prepared to start their semester.
New transfer students did not get to see the family spirit that ULM provides.
The new students who enrolled for the spring semester would have enjoyed it. They would have gotten a chance to learn about the RSOs at our university. This also would provide students the opportunities to make new friends and feel confident about starting university life.
Not only would this help transfer students, but also international students.
From personal experience, having that Week of Welcome was perfect for me to feel better despite being far from home and in a new environment.
But maybe there were reasons the RSOs didn’t have their events. The cold weather could be a reason behind the lack of welcome.
However, this is no reason to not have the events. They could have had their events at places like Bayou Pointe, the SUB Ballrooms, Activity Center or other places. These events could’ve included painting, game nights, magic shows or art competitions.
Another reason could be a lack of funding and volunteers. However, students are free during the beginning of the semester because the semester has just started and there isn’t much work to be done.
Also, the RSOs could have planned events for the spring semester over the winter break so they could be prepared.
A better welcome would have allowed new students to learn about organizations and expand their horizons before getting busy with classes and studying.
So RSOs, for the next spring semester, be more prepared for students. We want to be able to get involved and feel welcomed.
The more you do and promote yourself, the more likely we will want to join you and know more about your organization.
Maybe if you can’t welcome the students back as big as you do in the fall, find a way to make your presence known. Pass out candy in the Quad, hand out flyers about your RSO and your upcoming events and just be nice.
Just letting us know that you are there makes us feel welcomed. We want to know that we aren’t coming back to a ghost town.
Although RSOs didn’t do much to welcome students this time, we can hope to get a grand welcome in the coming semester with more exciting events, foods and games in the next semester.