Welcome Week invites student participation

Alica Danesh
Members of the Appreciation of Pilipino American Culture club recruit new members.

Members of the Appreciation of Pilipino American Culture club recruit new members. (Oliver Yu)

Free hot dogs, OC Rock Radio and rock climbing lured Saddleback students into the start of their fall 2009 semester.

Gaucho Welcome Week brought new and returning students to the Saddleback Quad for an opportunity to learn more about the school, receive free food and run into familiar faces. Students were met by school representatives, as well as the leaders of many on-campus clubs.

Daniel Spielman of the Saddleback Outreach Program distributed general-information pamphlets and campus maps.

“As a former student, it’s a great feeling being able to help overwhelmed and lost students find their way,” Spielman said.
Associated Student Government members encouraged students to join ASG by touting the benefits of being able to help serve the college, build leadership skillsĀ  and develop relationships. ASB stamps, which give students discounts at the Saddleback cafeteria and many local food places, were on sale.

“Joining ASG means you can graduate with a great college experience, get into highly acclaimed universities and develop skills that help you in the future,” said Farid Toloui, 19, ASG executive cabinet member.

The Appreciation of Filipino American Culture Club was present with a booth. They had one of their most successful turnouts this semester, gathering more than 100 new and returning members.

“Our club is focused on giving back to the community and spreading awareness of Filipino-American culture,” said Ken Carrell, 20, communications.

Super Friends was recruiting new members as well. This club is composed of students with disabilities, who along with “regular” college students work together to host monthly events promoting friendship.

“We help integrate students with disabilities and typical college students,” said Lori Thibeau, advisor of Super Friends. “Our first event is a Halloween party, which we hope will be very successful.”

Representatives from many businesses, such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo, were on campus helping students manage their finances.

Bank of America attracted students by offering financial advice and services and an iPod -speaker giveaway to whoever signed up for a student checking account. Wells Fargo also gave away promotional prizes.

“The bank creates solutions that fit the financial needs of students,” said Michael Estrada, Wells Fargo personal banker.

Students not only gained knowledge of the school programs and clubs, but they also enjoyed many free perks. Students were able to listen to tunes played by OC Rock Radio and receive free CDs while enjoying free barbecue and Italian ices.

“It’s a nice break from the stresses of the first week of school,” said Michelle Flores, 21, undecided.