Welcome Weekend initiates newest Lancers at California Baptist University
Riverside, Calif. (Sept. 4, 2017) – It was more than just the heat that gave the newest Lancers a warm welcome as they arrived at California Baptist University for Welcome Weekend, Sept. 1-4. CBU faculty and staff received approximately 2,000 freshmen and transfer students arriving for the start of the fall semester at CBU.
Welcome Weekend is designed to help students feel part of the CBU family as soon as possible, said Jay Stovall, director of new student programs and orientation.
“We want them to find friendships. We want them to thrive,” Stovall said. “I want a student to come away from Welcome Weekend with a few (new) friends, with an excitement to be a Lancer and with this place feeling a little more comfortable.”
Anna Chilson, a marketing freshman from Weed, California, said the weekend was helping her feel a part of the community.
“When we got here, everyone was ready to help,” Chilson said.
First on the Welcome Weekend schedule was move-in. As new students arrived on campus with carloads of luggage, CBU student leaders lined up next to the living areas prepared to help them move in. They unloaded vehicles, filled rolling bins with bedding, minifridges, clothes and other items and pushed them to the rooms.
Jacob Tarabetz, a student FOCUS leader, helps transport a student’s belongings during Welcome Weekend at California Baptist University on Sept. 1.
Additional weekend activities included a new event, Meet the Inland Empire, to help students learn what the area has to offer as various representatives from local restaurants, shops and churches spoke with the students. There was also a welcome from CBU President Dr. Ronald L. Ellis, an opportunity to meet with deans and faculty members and a special discount-shopping opportunity at Bed Bath and Beyond. Students met their FOCUS groups, which help acclimate students to campus life and participated in the traditional Kugel walk, where new students touch the globe symbolizing their commitment to live a “life of purpose” as they begin their college experience at CBU.
The newest members of the Lancer Nation take part in the Kugel Walk, a California Baptist University tradition, during Welcome Weekend on Sept. 1.
Savannah Knottingham, a psychology freshman from Fontana, California said she chose CBU for its Christian foundation.
“I think the slogan ‘Live Your Purpose’ is definitely what I’ve been aiming for all through high school,” Knottingham said.
Stovall said events during Welcome Weekend are thoroughly planned out.
“I hope the parents see the intentionality that we put into our programming, that they can trust us with their students,” Stovall said. “It’s another step for us to show that we are faithful stewards of our jobs and of their students.”
Tracy Gowling, a parent from of Bakersfield, California, said she was very happy that her daughter Alyssa chose to attend CBU.
“I just know this is a place she’s going to soar,” Gowling said. “She’s going to become more of who God created her to be.”
Concluding the fall 2017 Welcome Weekend activities is “Lancer Palooza,” a new event open to all students that features multi-Grammy award winning artist Lecrae.
“We want new students, right when they start CBU, to think, ‘I made the best decision ever.’ And then for the returners, to say, ‘this year is going to be amazing,’” Stovall said.