With the start of the new school year, the University of Northern Colorado hosted several events this weekend to help new students connect with each other before classes start, including Bears Bash and the Student Involvement Fair.
Bears Bash was held Saturday at Nottingham Field and featured several UNC sports teams, several businesses, bounce houses, games and music.
According to Megan Dodge, a UNC freshman, the cheerleading team was at the fair to say hello to families and children. Their goal was to ensure everyone felt involved and had fun. The cheer team did face painting for the children, handed out pom-poms and schedules, and gave out ice cream sandwiches.
The UNC Swimming and Diving team was in charge of the ring toss game. According to four team members, Leilani Herrera, Stephanie Tymoszuk, Tori Sayers and Holli Johnson, seeing other athletes with their families and friends showing their UNC school spirit was energizing.
The Union Colony Children’s Music Academy and the Tutoring Club were two businesses featured at Bears Bash. According to Kathy Azari, music teacher at the Union Colony Children’s Music Academy, this was the Music Academy’s second year at Bear’s Bash. Azari said they were at the event to promote their program and last year’s Bear Bash was a success.
According to Katerina Cox, worker of the Tutoring Club, they help K-12 and college students with one-on-one tutoring. The club helps in reading, writing, math, test taking skills and ACT and SAT preparation. Cox said the club hires high level college students part time as well.
The second event on Saturday to help welcome students to the UNC campus was the Student Involvement Fair held at the Candelaria lawn. The fair featured a variety of UNC clubs and organizations, including the Center for Peer Education, the Marcus Garvey Cultural Center, The Crucible literary magazine and several fraternities and sororities.
Taryn Wollert, a UNC sophomore, and Sean Steinhart, a UNC junior, sat with the Office of Student Life helping to check in all of the tables for the fair.
“The Office of Organizations organized the whole thing; we’re just helping out,” Steinhart said.
According to Wollert and Olivia Maldonado, UNC graduate student, the fair was a great opportunity for new students to connect before school starts again.
One of the organizations at the student fair was the Marcus Garvey Cultural Center. According to the UNC website, the MGCC is a center that aims to make students of color and historically marginalized groups feel connected to campus and empowered throughout their experience at UNC.
Another organization at the fair was the Center for Peer Education. According to Libby Harrington, UNC graduate assistant, the center provides support and resources for alcohol, mental health and sexual health. Harrington said they help students be safe about these specific issues.
Other Bear Welcome events this weekend included Northern at Night, the President’s Welcome, Taste of UNC and Rec Fest.
Upcoming Bear Welcome events include the UNC Local Business Fair at 7 p.m. on August 26 in the McKee Breezeway and the Student Organizations Night and Welcome at 7 p.m. August 27 at the University Center Fireside Lounge. For more information about events, students can visit https://www.unco.edu/bear-welcome.