Every semester, all freshman at Texas Wesleyan group together in order to gather signatures from various staff members and learn what resources are available for them.
Joe Brown, dean of freshmen success, said international students who transfer to Wesleyan as freshmen must complete a program called The Freshmen Success Experience (ASE 1111) during the third week of the semester. This gives students the opportunity to familiarize themselves with most of the buildings, speak to staff and learn who can provide them with personal assistance if needed. Dr. Bruce Benz, professor of biology, said the hunt helps students.
“The scavenger hunt provides them with the opportunity to locate those resources on campus,” Benz said. “It also requires familiarity with the map of campus and the ability to read English fluently.”
For the most part, the signature hunt takes place during the Fall. Because there were so many new students in the Spring, they made an exception.
“About the third week normally, we do what we call campus resource availability, familiarity, all the places and people at Wesleyan that can help students,” Brown said. “So as a new student you don’t know a lot of this, so most of the faculty plays this game, whether they do it in the class itself or they give the students a paper to go around on their own collecting signatures.”
Benz said he personally takes his international students to gather signatures around campus because the campus map is in English and it might be a problem for his students to read. He makes his students take notes and jot something down about every location they visit, including its surrounding buildings.
“With the international students, because they know they are challenged by detail in the English language, I dragged them around myself and I made them fill out the form and write something down about the locations we visited,” Benz said.
Rakan Alaquil, freshmen business major, said he was a part of the ASE 1111 during Fall 2012. He said the signature hunt was very helpful for him. It made him aware of all the personal assistance and resources that Wesleyan provides to its students; it also earned him extra-credit points in class.
“I was supposed to get signatures from different instructors, different people at Wesleyan to get points and to know the campus very well,” Alaquil said. “Also, it’s to help know the people here in case you need help with something.”