What includes gaming tournaments, a water park, the band Porterdavis and HBO Def Comedy Jamz Comedians? Tyler Junior College ‘s Welcome Week provides this and more, free to students, Aug. 25 – 29.
TJC has organized a Welcome Week on campus for decades, but never before has it been prepared by the Center for Student Life and Involvement (CSLI), a new and improved Student Activities organization.
“Welcome Week is a joint effort, but it’s all within the CSLI, which used to be called Student Activities,” Vincent Nguyen, Interim Director of CSLI said. “It is a joint effort with the recreation center, Jonathan Pollard and other organizations – Social Experience, Apache Activities Council and Student Senate.”
Jonathan Pollard, Recreation Services Coordinator, welcomes technology along with students to the annual tradition. Gaming tournaments will be held everyday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on three mounted 42-inch televisions at Rogers Student Center.
“Xbox and Playstation are gaming systems students are asking about,” Pollard said. “I talked to students who participated before, and this is what they are interested in, so that’s what we got.”
There will be specific games for each day of the week. Monday’s competition will be Guitar Hero and NCAA 09; Tuesday will have Rock Band and Halo 3; Wednesday there will be Guitar Hero and Tiger Woods; Thursday’s competition will be Rock Band and Burnout Paradise and Friday will be a “U Call It,” which will allow students to decide what they want to play.
Every day will provide a different type of entertainment completely free to all TJC students.
Monday there will be a “meet and greet” held for students and professors from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. between Jenkins and Potter Hall.
Nguyen said it is an ice cream social and a chance for students to meet professors outside of a classroom environment. He said it should give students a chance to see that professors “really are human beings.”
The first attraction on Tuesday will be an outdoor water park. It will be set up on the TJC field located behind the Ornales Health and Physical Education Center.
“We will have water slides, water inflatables, water balloon tosses, and we will be giving away a lot of shirts, koozies and TJC towels,” Nguyen said. “We will also have a little tiki bar out there for smoothies. We will just basically have a block party.”
Another allure of Tuesday CSLI will set up a coffee shop where the Austin-based band Porterdavis will have a two-hour live performance. Mike Meadows, Porterdavis percussionist, said he enjoys playing for college crowds because they are more receptive to different music.
“A trio made up of guitar, percussion and harmonica is not the norm, and for some people, if you’re out of their comfort zone, you’re off their radar,” Meadows said. “College students are more open though, and seem to get our music more quickly than other audiences.”
Wednesday offers insight into the clubs and organizations that TJC offers with the Activities Fair, or the Apache Cookout. It is from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will involve over 30 active TJC organizations heavily recruiting students.
“It’s really a chance to where students can get a bunch of free stuff, and a lot of free information,” Nguyen said. “The activities fair is a new tradition. This is our third year doing it. The clubs, departmental organizations, outside vendors, cell phone companies, banks, anything basically, will actually set up shop. It is really a service to our students.”
A game show with either a “Think Fast, Jeopardy” environment or a “Deal or No Deal” set up will be held that evening Nguyen said. He also said prizes will be given away, but students would have to come to the show to see which game it is.
Thursday night there will be a dance from 9 p.m. to midnight in Rogers Student Center. There will be a DJ with a variety of club music.
Paralleling the Def Poetry Jamz TJC had last semester, Friday will hold the TJC Def Comedy Jamz. Tickets will be available free for students to pickup Tuesday, Aug. 26 at the information desk. TJC identification must be provided.
“We will have two awesome comedians that were on BET Comic View and HBO Def Comedy Jamz that will be featured at this evenings comedy show – T-Rex and Lawrence Owens,” Nguyen said.
Nguyen said Welcome Week provides an introduction to student life for new TJC students, and an entertaining reception of events for returning students.
“What we are trying to do is change the view of what student activities used to be. A lot of people do not really understand what Student Activities is,” Nguyen said.