On June 4, the Pierce College Puyallup campus will be filled with food, games, vendors, giveaways, events, music and possibly a gyroscope for Raider Appreciation Day. The entire staff of the Office of Student Life is currently planning the Back-to-the-Future-themed day.
The main event will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. all over campus and Back to the Future will play on a large screen at 7 p.m. on the lawn.
While RAD will be a large event, it was extended over the course of student appreciation week, or SAW, until spring 2013.
The week used to be filled with both small and large events each day that showed appreciation for students through various kinds of entertainment. For a variety of reasons, the 2012-2013 staff of the Office of Student Life decided to change it to RAD, and the new tradition will continue this year.
One reason the event was changed was because of costs. Ashlyn Doltar, vice president for student government, explained that when planning the SAW in the spring of 2013 the staff of the Office of Student Life realized that they did not have enough money to have a week of events. To compensate for their lack of budget, they chose to consolidate the event to one day and use the money to make it grand.
In addition to this, changing to a one day event eliminated questions from students, and also made it more likely they would come.
“It’s spring quarter. It’s right before finals. Everybody is busy,” Doltar said. “It is kind of hard to get students to come to events before finals because they are focused on finals. So, versus having to think about what is going on on a daily basis, it is just one day and they can just relax for that one day and feel rejuvenated.”
One other goal the change from SAW to RAD has accomplished is that it has included more of the Pierce mascot into events in hopes to raise school spirit. Doltar explained that next year, if the budget for the event is larger then there is a possibility RAD would change to Raider Appreciation Week, or RAW.
Finally, SAW was also changed to RAD to help those planning the event. Doltar explained that for RAD each member of the team has a part they are in charge of coordinating or planning, and having the event only be one day makes this simpler for the whole team.
Furthermore, this year the staff is trying a new trial aspect of the job that involves leaders also being in charge of planning events for the following fall quarter. The switch to a one-day event allows them to focus on these events as well.
“Student leaders are students too; they are working on all their events and planning them,” Doltar said. “They have their own school work and, this year, they are planning fall quarter events, too.”
Student Life Director Sean Cooke explained that the changed to RAD really has benefitted the student leaders who plan the event.
“I wish it was a week long, but I think the benefits we have of doing one day really help students out more and help student leaders more. We insert a little bit of awesomeness into other events through the year.”
He also discussed that the changed has some disadvantages too.
“One thing I am worried about is that students don’t go five days a week… I worry that not as many students get to experience it because of classes and schedules,” Cooke said. “Not all students are here every day, so I think we might bump it up to two days in the future to straddle that kind of schedule. That way, more students get to experience it.”
In the end, SAW was changed to RAD in order to benefit both students and staff at Pierce College.
“I think last year it went really well and students really enjoyed it,” Doltar said.
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