Trading in old gear for new owl wings

Jessica GuerrucciManaging Editor

Transfer students got to decide between tumblers, sunglasses and T-shirts after trading their old university shirt in at the Swap for Success and SCSU Swag event hosted by New Student and Sophomore Programs on Wednesday, Sept. 11.

Communication major Mike Jaurez-Sartillo, a senior who transferred from Gateway Community College in New Haven, Conn., said he liked how it gave him a chance to represent his institution. Since coming to Southern, he said he prefers it over Gateway.

“I think one of the differences I would list is the warmth of the student community,” said Jaurez-Sartillo, “meaning, if you talk to somebody else they’ll talk right back to you; if you ask for help, they’ll help you out.”

The event was hosted on the third floor of Hilton C. Buley Library outside the Academic Success Center. According to Yarelis Canales, Graduate Intern for New Student and Sophomore Programs, it was held so transfer students could also get information about the success center.

“I think definitely getting them to the area where support systems are is super crucial,” said Canales. “I hear a lot of transfer students say that they wish they had known this was here during their first semester, so I feel like just getting them up here so they know where resources are.”

As for the shirts that students swapped, Canales said they would be recycled. Communication advertising major Alessandra Lupo, sophomore, who transferred from Lesley University in Cambridge, Mass., said she needed to get rid of everything associated with her old school.

“I really wanted more Southern stuff because everyone here wears Southern stuff, like, all the time,” said Lupo. “I felt like I only had a few pieces, so this was really cool to just recycle the old shirts and get new ones.”

Lupo said the two reasons she chose to transfer to Southern were that she wanted a school that was closer to home and more affordable. Since transferring, she said one of the differences she noticed was that Southern really cares about its students.

“It’s reflected in how many things are available to us as students,” said Lupo. “Like, the buildings are all updated, they have a lot of events, like, every week, and it’s just a bigger sense of community compared to my old school.”

Jaurez-Sartillo also said how the environment at Southern is welcoming and that it is easier to talk to and meet people than it was at Gateway.

“In my community college, it was kind of going there, doing your classes, do your work and get out,” said Jaurez-Sartillo. “You don’t really have time, or maybe you have time to make friends and you don’t really want to, whereas here there are a lot of people that are open to friendliness.”

According to Sal Rizza, Director of New Student and Sophomore Programs, there are roughly 750 transfer students for the fall 2019 semester, compared to 681 in fall 2016, according to Southern’s University Factbook. With over 700 transfer students, Kendall Manderville, Transfer Student Assistant for New Student and Sophomore Programs, said it is important they ensure the transition to Southern is easy.

“Success isn’t always just academically, but also its transitioning,” said Manderville. “We want them to have the smoothest transition as possible they can have.”

Photo Credit: Jessica Guerrucci

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