What it takes to welcome a new semester at CBU
Riverside, Calif. (Sept. 6, 2023) – With the fall semester starting on Sept. 5, California Baptist University was bustling with students back on campus.
CBU staff were out in courtyards and walkways the first two days of class, welcoming students, giving directions and even handing out frozen treats.
In the weeks and days leading up to the fall semester, offices and departments across campus were busy preparing for and looking forward to the arrival of students.
Preparations included cleaning and inspecting the living areas, said Dr. Daron Hubbert, director of Residence Life and Housing Services. The office also finalized room assignments for students who applied for housing within the last few weeks.
“Our jobs in Residence Life and Housing are centered around students and their experience on campus, so we are excited to have them move in,” Hubbert said. “We are looking forward to the energy that students bring to the campus and the living areas, the relationships that will be developed and the excitement of having everyone back.”
Maintaining the student living areas is a year-round process for Facilities and Planning Services, said Brianna Zepeda, assistant director of housing maintenance and operations. Once summer camps are over, maintenance-related projects are completed and units are painted and cleaned. Additionally, the department cares for the grounds around the living areas such as landscaping, parking lots and pools.
“The students depend on our department and technicians to keep their living areas functioning safely and properly,” Zepeda said. “Every year our hope is that from the moment students (and parents) arrive on campus, they have the ‘feels just like home’ experience. We want their living areas to feel safe, functional and well kept.”
Meanwhile, Spiritual Life was preparing to start chapel with a series in the Gospel of John, for students to join SL Groups and to help students grow in their spiritual life, said Jacob Ravenscraft, dean of Spiritual Life. The staff is looking forward to building relationships with students.
“Our hope is that the students attach themselves to God’s Word as their main source of truth and life … they grow a burden for the lost, and they begin to see and participate in disciple-making on campus and in their local churches,” Ravenscraft said.
Staff in the office of Student Care trained faculty, staff and student leaders to prepare them to care for students, said Dr. Heather Hubbert, associate dean of students for Student Care.
“Student Care exists to be a resource for students as they experience unexpected life events that may impact their academic journey,” Hubbert said. “We know that each student arrives to campus with different life experiences, and our hope is that CBU will be a place where they can be known and experience Jesus in new and tangible ways.”
This summer, renovations at the Office of Student Success (OSS) expanded study space to create almost 200 seats for individual and group tutoring, writing support and study. The office includes the University Tutoring Center, University Writing Center, Disability Services and the Veterans Resource Center. The expansion of the study space brings new opportunities to help students succeed, said Michael Osadchuk, director of the University Tutoring Center. The office is also providing professional development opportunities to their student workers.
“Supporting CBU students and engaging in their success is foundational to the work we do,” Osadchuk said. “Success in the classroom, as students move toward commencement, is vital, but we are also committed to the long-term success of CBU students as they graduate and move into their calling. I am delighted that in the OSS, we are part of student’s growth and development as we empower them to live their purpose.”