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Residential Life offers incentives to freshmen

September 24, 2015
Phillip Quinn, a freshman finance major, gets his Bulldog Reward Card punched by Antonio Wilson. – Photo by Rebekah Barnes

Phillip Quinn, a freshman finance major, gets his Bulldog Reward Card punched by Antonio Wilson. – Photo by Rebekah Barnes

Rebekah Barnes
Staff Reporter | reb033@latech.edu

 

Would you eat breakfast with your RA for a quarter of free rent? Residential Life is offering new incentives to further involve students living on campus.

 

One of these programs is the Bulldog Reward Card, a punch card that students receive upon moving in.

 

Residential Life hosts several events at which freshmen attending can get their Bulldog Reward Cards punched and redeem them for a variety of prizes ranging from cups and T-shirts to a quarter free of housing fees, Nook tablets or a ski vacation.

 

Residential Life’s new programs aim to get freshmen out of the dorms to encourage campus involvement. Some of the events include movies in the Lambright pool, foam sword fights and career planning.

 

Rachel Madore, an Adams Hall resident, said these first year programs have already helped her feel at home.

 

She moved to Ruston from Phoenix, Arizona, so when her friends on campus went home for the weekend, Madore had to stay in Ruston.

 

“I didn’t feel stranded or like I had nothing to do,” Madore, a freshman political science and English major said, “but everyone else got to be with their families.”

 

Casey Ingram, director of Residential Life, said it is especially important for freshmen who are far from their families to bond with each other and build their own support systems away from home.

 

Antonio Wilson, a resident assistant for Mitchell, is one of the minds behind the incentive program.

 

“We originally starting meeting to talk about issues we ran into as freshmen,” said Wilson, a senior agriculture education major.

 

He said he hoped the prizes and fun events would help students transition into living on Tech’s campus.

 

“The freshmen are essentially the future of the university, so it’s important to retain them so the university will continue to grow,” Wilson said. “A freshman usually decides within about the first six weeks whether he’s staying or going to transfer.”

 

Not every student is drawn by the promise of flashy rewards.

 

Chanse Takacs said he attends events to make friends,

 

“I’m here to be social,” said Takacs, a freshman chemical engineering major. “I’m not really here for the prizes.”

 

Philip Quinn met Takacs at Residential Life’s Tech Games. Quinn said he and his friends spend most of their free time together in Mitchell’s lobby.

 

“We don’t leave that lobby till around 3 a.m. usually or whenever it’s time to go to sleep,” said Quinn, a freshman finance major.

 

He said that freshmen programs give people who do not know each other the chance to find common interests.

 

“It feels like I’ve got a lot of siblings,” Quinn said.

 

 

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