By Orlando Rodriguez and Lawrence Bayley, The Whetstone
Wesley College has gone through two campus life directors in as many years. Last year, LaDarius Thompson left; this past fall semester, Waverly DeBraux left after only a couple of months.
Many students say this has contributed to a lack of interesting and consistent events on campus.
“Change is very necessary and we need something going on every day,” senior Dyamond Ruffin said. “Reason why students are getting high and drunk is because there is absolutely nothing to do. To limit this, the school needs to keep the students entertained at all times.”
Elana Baukman was recently appointed acting director of campus life and student activities board adviser.
“My duties as the adviser of SAB are I meet with the executive board and help them with planning their activities and with advertisement for their activities,” Baukman said. “I also oversee the check request and budget process for them.”
Baukman said she has plans for more activities.
“We try to have a wide variety of activities, so we do excursions, novelties, and different series of game show and comedians,” she said. “We have had over 300 students who have attended the excursions which included six flags, the New York trip, roller skating and ice skating.”
Many students believe the planning ahead will lead to more successful events.
“We have not gotten very far in that planning,” Baukman said, “but during the SAB meeting, we ask the members to begin to brainstorm their ideas and start to pull them together.”
No firm plans have been made for the fall because the budget has not been approved.
“As for the fall, a lot of it will depend on how much money we have,” Baukman said.
Students say they want to have the same college experience as other universities and colleges.
“Our school should hold more parties and more events during the day time,” said sophomore Briana Matthews.
“I would like to see more parties and social events so we can have more opportunities to meet and interact with students on and off campus,” said sophomore Eddie Escobar.
Like Ruffin, some students say the lack of events lead to drug and alcohol abuse.
“I think you will see students who consume alcohol at all colleges not matter what the level of activities are,” Baukman said. “I know that over this semester SAB has done 11 activities, not including what the other clubs and organizations have done.”
The sudden change of directors/advisor in the middle of the school year has left students clueless and wanting answers why DeBraux left a week after the disastrous Homecoming weekend that left a few of Wesley students injured after a brawl.
“Rumors around school are that he was fired because he was not doing his job properly,” Matthews said. “I also heard students saying the job was too much to handle for him to handle.”
Baukman said that both Thompson and DeBraux left for personal reasons.
“I know Ladarius went on to different employment and so did Waverly,” Baukman said. “It kind of deals with their personal reasons and not the club or organization.”
Some students have not heard of Baukman’s appointment.
“I did not know who the last director was, and as an active student who is involved on campus, that is not a very good look,” Ruffin said.
Student Activity Board members say they suggest events to Baukman and Student Life Dean Wanda Anderson.
“At our meeting the students give us the ideas and we try our best to make them happen,” said Porshay Matthews.
“We try to do exactly what the students ask,” echoed her sister Sharay
Some students want events that are a mixture of all the things that college has to offer.
“I would like for our college to hold events that deal with academics, fun and athletics all at once,” Oden said.
Organizations on campus have a specific duty to meet the academic and athletics events that the student body is looking for.
“It would be hard to cover them all at the same time,” Baukman said. “But I do know that there are activities where we are able to combine both, and Intramurals does a lot of athletic events, and the ARC does a lot of the trivia and academic events, and SAB does a lot of fun events.”
Students said they would like to see the alternative Thirsty Thursdays resurrected.
This event was created by the school to try to give the students a safer way to enjoy themselves rather than drinking and smoking marijuana out in the dangerous parts of the Dover community.
“I wish they would bring back the alternative Thirsty Thursdays in the underground, it was a lot of fun,” said freshmen De’Aira Harper. “I would also like more hands-on activities, more parties that are just for Wesley College students. But if outsiders are welcomed, they should have to pay and have college ID and more appealing trips.”
Some upperclassmen said they want their last ride to be one to remember.
“The school should hold more parties, game nights, and open gym should be more available throughout the week and not weekends,” Ruffin said. “They should also spice up the Underground and bring back comedians like they did in previous years.”
A few students enjoyed what the previous directors had to offer to the school
“I feel as though the old directors were a lot more fun and planned more events for the whole student body,” Matthews said. “I hope we can work back to that very soon.”
“The last director we had was pretty cool to my knowledge,” Escobar said. “While he was here, I felt like the students were having fun even though the Homecoming party turned out to be more than they could handle.”
Others said he did not meet the criteria to be director/advisor.
“They did not bring the creativity that was needed,” Oden said. “I felt as though they were hired to be hired.”
Students are hoping Baukman will make a difference.
“With a new director, I am wishing for more opportunities and more fun events,” Harper said. “Hopefully we can finally get the parties in the gym that everyone is wanting.”
Most students just want those in charge to give an honest effort on what they are offering as activities and events.
“I feel neutral about the events,” Oden said. “They are trying now but previous years the events were a lot better.”
Consistency is the key for some students
“It is a shame, and as a college we need to be more established and more consistent,” Ruffin said. “I just want to get my money’s worth while I am here.”