Thursday, May 04, 2006

Skagit Valley College Transfer Students Visit WSU

WSU recruiters often say “If we can get people to campus, they will become a student!” Our recent experience holds great promise of proving that statement correct. The WSU Learning Center – Skagit, Island & San Juan applied for and received a combined Diversity/Recruitment grant to fund a three-day trip to Pullman by several Skagit Valley College transfer students of color. Four members of the SVC “Calling All Colors” club were invited on the trip; Xochil Hernandez, Daniel Andrade, Maria Barragan, and Sam Rivera.

The four ate at several campus dining halls, exercised at the Rec Center, visited and talked with faculty in the degrees of choice of the students - Criminal Justice, Business, and Communications. Tours of campus – of course including ice cream at Ferdinand’s - and long talks with WSU students and staff in the Chicano Latino students organization rounded out the visit. Senior Advisor Kristopher Baier arranged the trip and was their host.

The effect on the students? Each of them wrote a letter of thanks and noted the impact of the trip. Xochil Hernandez wrote: “Before this visit, I thought that I would never think about going to WSU because it is so far away and I thought it would be kind of ugly – hot and without any trees. But after this visit to WSU my mind changed – it is beautiful! I was glad to see Latinos at the college too.” Mary Barragan noted “When I got back, I could not stop talking about Washington State University. Everyone on campus is there to help you and is passionate about WSU. I am convinced WSU is my number one choice!”

Daniel Anrade explained: “This trip definitely was an extraordinary method to answer my questions regarding my education. Thanks to Kristopher Baier and all the great people that I met at the campus, now I certainly have a plan. I now know I will go to WSU after Skagit Valley College.”

In addition to his letter, Daniel, a DJ on the SVC Spanish-language radio station, raved about his experience at WSU on the air, mentioning the support services for Latino students and the passion that faculty and staff have for the university.

The world-class faculty and the passion of the students and staff made a big impact on these high-achieving students. Three days and personal attention helped these west-side students realize the value of Washington State University!