UNK Today | August 2014 - page 3

By JOSH MOODY
Hub Staff Writer
KEARNEY — Blue and
Gold Welcome Week, a
time-honored tradition at the
University of Nebraska at Kear-
ney, will welcome new students
to campus and to the communi-
ty with a long list of activities.
One of the
first high-
lights of Wel-
come Week
is the Blue
and Gold
Showcase on
the Campus
Greens. The
showcase
brings com-
munity busi-
nesses and
organizations
to campus.
About 200 or
more orga-
nizations are
expected to
be present
at the open-
air Blue and
Gold Show-
case as part
of Welcome
Week activi-
ties, accord-
ing to Tim
Danube,
associate
director of
the Nebras-
kan Stu-
dent Union
activities and
organizations.
Danube said that since the
inception of Blue and Gold
Showcase toward the end
of the 1990s, the event has
grown from 20 organizations
to 200.
“It’s really progressed and
become an awesome opportuni-
ty for the campus and the com-
munity,” Danube said. “There
are different parts and different
aspects that have been added as
time goes on.”
Danube said any entity from
the community is welcome
to a table at Blue and Gold
Showcase provided that they
fill out a form requesting a
spot.
Danube also pointed out
that coordinating the location
of tables is a major under-
taking and that the organiz-
ers attempt to spread out
the activities to offer more
diversity. Such examples, said
Danube, are booths that offer
food, music or interactive
components.
For Chandra Daffer, assistant
By JOSH MOODY
Hub Staff Writer
KEARNEY — Freshman
year is a trying time for many
students as they attempt to
transition from high school to
college life, and the First Year
Program at the University of
Nebraska at Kearney aims to
ease that transition.
“We help students start col-
lege life on the right foot from
the beginning,” said Chandra
Daffer, assistant director of
UNK’s First Year Program.
“Our mission and the purpose
of our office is to help first-year
students transition to college
life at UNK through academic
and social programming.”
That programming begins
before students are even
adapting to college life with
New Student Enrollment Days,
which is conducted by working
with UNK Admissions. The
programming continues the
very moment students arrive
on campus with 16 days of
activities beginning with Blue
and Gold Welcome Week.
“We coordinate with all the
different, varying campus enti-
ties to pull together events and
programs that will transition a
student not only socially, but
also academically,” Daffer said.
Daffer also works with
Mainstreet Kearney to organize
Destination Downtown, an
annual welcome event on The
Bricks, which is now in its 11th
year.
According to Daffer, the First
Year Program helps students
to make friends, build rela-
tionships, find and join student
organizations and prepare for
the academic
challenges that
they will face
on the collegiate
level.
“If they can
choose activities
and programs
and experiences
that will help
push them outside of their com-
fort zone, that is when they’ll
begin to grow and really feel
like UNK is their home and
college life is an experience
that will help them become
more of a well-rounded indi-
vidual,” Daffer said.
The First Year Program also
focuses on student retention
and hopes to increase the
retention rate at
UNK. According
to recent figures
from Kathy
Livingston,
UNK’s director
of institutional
research, the
current freshman
retention rate is
75.5 percent.
“One of the keys to graduat-
ing — and to graduate on time
— is that you’ve got to have a
good start, particularly the first
two years,” UNK Chancellor
Doug Kristensen said. “We’ve
found that we can increase our
retention rates if they’ve got a
good start.”
The First Year Program has
been around in some capac-
ity since 2002. In 2012, the
program was rebooted by
moving it from the department
of academic affairs to Student
Affairs. This year, the program
again changed departments,
this time to the newly created
academic services and enroll-
ment management department.
Daffer said that while the
program is designed for first-
year students, it isn’t limited to
freshmen. Transfer students can
take advantage of the program,
too. In the future, Daffer hopes
to enhance programmatic offer-
ings for veterans and nontradi-
tional students.
email to:
UNK’s First Year Program wants
to get students off on right start
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Program aims to smooth
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UNK
Today
:
Best Years
Chandra Daffer
Doug Kristensen
Welcome Week a hit on UNK
campus, in Kearney community
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS
Friday
7 a.m.-2 p.m. — Dining Services
Open, The Market @ 27th Street
and Louie’s Diner
8 a.m.-3:30 p.m. — All resi-
dence halls open for new student
move-in.
2:30 p.m. — Family orientation
and campus tour of student ser-
vices offices, campuswide
4 p.m. — Meet the Blue & Gold
Welcome Weekend groups, Cam-
pus Greens
5-8 p.m. — Blue & Gold Show-
case, Campus Greens
5:30-7 p.m. — Chancellor’s
Picnic, Campus Greens
7-7:30 p.m. — Marching Band
Exhibition Performance, Foster
Field
7:45-8:45 p.m. — First Res-
idence Hall floor meeting, all
residence halls
7:45-8:45 p.m. — First-year
commuter student meeting, Ne-
braskan Student Union
8:45-10:15 p.m. — Playfair,
Foster Field
10:15 p.m. — Loper Rock the
Night, Nebraskan Student Union
Courtyard
Saturday
8 a.m. — Loper Breakfast and
Meet the Loper Leaders, Campus
Greens
9:45 a.m. — Life as a Loper
orientation, Nebraskan Student
Union Ponderosa Room
5-7 p.m. — Loper bingo, Nebras-
kan Student Union
8-10 p.m. — Lopers Under the
Lights, Foster Field
Sunday
1-3 p.m. — Campus Class
Roam, Nebraskan Student Union
Atrium
5-7 p.m. — Party in the park,
Harmon Park
8 p.m. — Comedian Tracey
Ashley, Nebraskan Student
Union
Monday
11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. — Cam-
pus Ministries root beer float
party, Cope Memorial Fountain
7 p.m. — Greek Life informa-
tion session, Nebraskan Student
Union Cedar Room
7-9 p.m. — First day of tutoring
available, Calvin T. Ryan Library,
second floor
7 p.m. — Navigators word
and worship kickoff, Campus
Greens
7 p.m. — Christian Student Fel-
lowship ultimate frisbee, Campus
Greens
9 p.m. — Back-to-school movie
night, Campus Greens
Tuesday
10 a.m.-7 p.m. — Beyond the Wall
poster sale, Nebraskan Student
Union
6-7:30 p.m. or 8-9:30 p.m. —
Sex Signals, Nebraskan Student
Union Ponderosa Room
9:30 p.m. — Community assem-
bly might, residence halls
Wednesday
All day — Wellness Center
opening day events, Wellness
Center
10 a.m.-7 p.m. — Beyond the Wall
poster sale, Nebraskan Student
Union
4 p.m. — Wellness Center rib-
bon-cutting ceremony, Wellness
Center
5:30 p.m. — Spaghetting
to Know You dinner, Newman
Center
7:30 p.m. — Back to school
bonfire and games, Holy Cross
Campus Ministry
10 p.m. — Mass, Newman
Center
10:30 p.m. — Sundaes on
Wednesday, Newman Center
Thursday
5 p.m. — Welcome Back Barbe-
cue, Harmon Park
6-8 p.m. — Christian Student
Fellowship Barbecue, CSF Campus
House
7 p.m. — Navigators freshman
connection and Bible study, Bruner
Hall 177
8-10 p.m. — Destination Down-
town, Downtown Kearney: The
Bricks
Friday
11 a.m.-2 p.m. — Inflatable
games, Campus Greens
5 p.m.-1 a.m. — Big Apple fun
night, Big Apple Fun Center
7:30 p.m. — Movie night:
“School of Rock,” World The-
atre
Kearney Hub file
ABOVE: THE BLUE AND GOLD
SHOWCASE
draws both students and
community members to campus for a
variety of interactive tables, music and
food. The annual event also features the
Chancellor’s Picnic.
AT LEFT:
JORDAN GONZALEZ
gets
wet at a dunk tank as part of the Blue
and Gold Community Showcase. On
average, about 200 organizations take
part in the annual showcase.
“It’s really
progressed
and be-
come an
awesome
opportunity
for the
campus
and the
community.
There are
different
parts and
different
aspects
that have
been added
as time
goes on.”
Tim Danube
WELCOME WEEK, PAGE 5
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