Transitions can be difficult. Everyone experiences change differently, and transferring to Seattle University comes with its own challenges. Luckily, on Nov. 17, a new office will open on campus to specifically address concerns of transitions. Occupying a familiar space to transfer students—formerly the Tekakwitha Collegium in STCN 110—is now home to a new office: the Redhawk Resource Hub.
The members of the newly formed Redhawk Resource Hub!
Focusing on orientation and transitions, the RRH offers many services that cater to veterans, students who are parents, commuter students and transfer students. The RRH is a central location to have any questions answered in regard to transitions. Whether a veteran is transitioning to college life, or a student has an unexpected transition that he, she, or they find challenging, the Hub offers guidance and assistance to any student on campus. Hub Assistant Taylor Date described the RRH as a central starting point for any question someone might have.
“We’ve done research on all the departments on campus to determine what resources they offer in order to provide direction to students,” Date said. “Transitions may be family problems, maybe you’re a first generation student—we are quite broad in the resources we offer.”
The closure of the Tekakwitha Collegium has brought some concerns within the transfer community. Student Government’s Vice President of Finance, Jordan Murakami, spent a significant amount of time last year building community within the transfer students at “the Tek” and has mixed feelings about the loss of this space.
“We don’t walk around with name tags, so how do we find those people and then how do we build community off that. The Tek solved both of these issues. It was the one location that the person standing next to you, you knew the person standing next to you was a transfer student and that the space was meant for them, and now that’s gone,” Murakami said.
As Transfer Student Representative, Murakami worked with the Tek staff to improve the transfer student experience and is worried the loss of specific space for transfer students is going to marginalize them.
“The tek was extremely good at creating community,” Murakami said. “As a tek member that is where I found my foundation of a community that led me to where I am today. As a transfer student, I am very proud of my identity and it’s extremely sad that it’s gone.”
For many, there are issues with not only lack of space, but also the model of how transfer students are integrated into the Seattle U community.
“[The] Center For Orientation Transition Programs is working really hard at changing the orientation model so that more students are included who otherwise might not have been part of the full picture,” said RRH Coordinator Schynequa Mathis.
Redhawk Resource Hub members discuss upcoming events and strategy for the week
Mathis believes that students who transferred in later quarters did not get as much advising and focus as those who transferred in the fall. She hopes that by changing this system the Redhawk transition will be easier for these students.
Offering programs that address the needs of transfer, international, graduate, adult learners and student veterans, as well as other specialized and traditionally underrepresented student populations, the RRH is working to close the gap between the transfer and new student experiences.
Mathis is working with the staff at the RRH to provide new programming to students starting this fall as well as programming for the winter quarter.
“Veteran students can come in here and have a space to ask questions and get the different resources out of the community for them,” she said. “In winter quarter we have a financial literacy series—something for international students—and family movie night for students who are parents.”
The staff at the RRH is working to establish a professional space that is welcoming to students and said they are open to suggestions on programming and improvements.
“We are trying to find a nice balance between having a professional space and also space where students feel comfortable too,” Date said.
Over the next few months the RRH staff will work to increase their visibility on campus and is hosting a grand opening event on Nov. 17. Students can visit the office in STCN 110 between 12 and 4 p.m. to meet the staff of the Hub, participate in social media giveaways for Amazon and Starbucks gift cards and get some free lunch at the same time.
“There’s going to be food, giveaways, resource help, people from different departments dropping in, and the first hundred people to arrive will get a free cell phone credit card cases,” Date said.
After Nov. 17 the Redhawk Resource Hub will be open Monday through Friday and the staff is available for walk-in questions anytime during the normal office hours from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Jarrod may be reached at [email protected]