VSA 2012: It Begins!
By David J. Dunn, Program Coordinator
Opening Ceremonies are on Sunday Night. Students get to know their proctor groups, some of our community expectations, and what is going to happen during their stay here. But we also want them to get excited and have fun! That is why we are privileged to have Dr. Amanda Funk on staff. She comes to us from Ball State University, where she has extensive experience teaching courses on nutrition, wellness, fitness prescription and testing, and Zumba! Shew as just the person to get things started with an impromptu dance number and a cheer that the whole group joined in. I’ve been walking around campus since Sunday humming, “Party’s rocking in the house tonight,” and softly chanting, “V-S-A-Hey!”
After breakfast, students gather on the patio of the Commons Center where they meet their Teaching Assistants and are escorted to class. It can be a bit crazy, but everyone gets where they need to go.
The first day is a day of settling in. I spent a lot of time yesterday getting instructors extra supplies and taking care of minor technology glitches. Students can sometimes be a bit “shell shocked” after the first day. They are all very bright, so it can be a bit overwhelming to be in a class of their true peers, taught by experts in the field. If a student comes to one of us and says, “My brain hurts,” we are doing our job. This is a place where students are encouraged to push themselves and take intellectual risks.
As a former VSA instructor for five years, I have seen this first hand. It is always great by the end of the week when that same student would come up to me and say, “Wow! I never knew I could do that! I learned so much.”
It’s Day #2. Our students are settled in. It’s time for our instructors to show them all the amazing things their minds can do!