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The Source

New welcome center sets tone for L&C experience

April 01, 2013

  • Campus Safety Lead Dispatcher Bruce Burns and Alexa Jakusovszky ’16
  • Jakusovszky has been known to use the welcome center’s printer to provide maps to visitors that direct them to tourist destinations like Voodoo Donuts in downtown Portland.

Just in time to greet more than 80 visitors every day from now until the end of May, Lewis & Clark’s new welcome center offers a friendly gateway to the campus at large.

Located in the Campus Safety and Information building, the welcome center is staffed from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday by six undergraduate student workers. Ranging from first-year students to seniors, the students are trained to provide helpful information and a warm first impression to all campus visitors.

Alexa Jakusovszky ’16 enjoys working at the welcome center because she remembers what it was like to visit Lewis & Clark for the first time.

“The campus tour prepares students to make a life-changing choice,” Jakusovszky said. “My job is to connect with families and make sure their first impression of the campus is awesome.”

Renovation improvements to the building include new carpet, paint, and countertops, as well as modern furniture, a computer and printer, and a large-screen HDTV featuring a virtual campus tour produced and directed by student Remy Neymarc.

Jakusovszky has been known to use the welcome center’s printer to provide maps to visitors that direct them to tourist destinations like Voodoo Doughnut in downtown Portland.

To help ensure a positive impression to visitors who are taking admission tours, the CAS Office of Admissions has also taken steps to provide 12 parking spaces in the Akin parking lot. The spaces will be reserved through the end of the school year and returned for general use as visitor demand decreases.

The majority of newly admitted students and their families will be on campus April 1 to 13.

A red carpet culture

As part of the wider-effort to increase the welcoming culture at Lewis & Clark, CAS Dean for Enrollment and Communications Lisa Meyer offers a few simple things everyone on campus can do:

  • If you see someone on campus who looks like a visitor, give them a warm welcome.
  • Wear your gold nametag at all times so visitors can easily identify whom to ask for assistance.
  • Offer to give directions or answer questions for anyone who might seem a bit lost or confused.
  • Check your website and make certain it is up to date.
  • Encourage visitors to explore the campus by visiting art shows, coffee shops, the College Bookstore, etc.

“Students and their parents are being more discriminating with where to invest their education,” Meyer said. “The impetus falls on all of us to mirror the institution and to craft a positive experience for visitors. I always try to remember this is their moment—their one chance to experience Lewis & Clark. What kind of feeling will they walk away with? A good visit can make all the difference in whether an admitted student chooses to enroll.”