Adams State welcomes new students


A rainy day did nothing to dampen spirits Friday as Adams State University welcomed its Freshman Class of 2014. New Student Orientation took place on campus Aug. 21-22; fall semester classes begin Monday, Aug. 25.

Dr. Mario Rivas (left) and Thomas Brown helped to inspire Adams State students, faculty, and staff.

Wearing t-shirts emblazoned with a victorious Grizzly and the phrase: "You Are Who You Want to Be," the new students were inspired at Friday's New Student Convocation by Dr. Mario Rivas and Thomas Brown. Both are nationally recognized authorities in increasing student achievement and success, particularly that of first-generation and minority students. They speak from experience, having grown up and attended school together in Oakland, Calif. They overcame poverty and other disadvantages to become educational leaders.

The pair also gave presentations targeted to faculty and staff on how to motivate and connect with students. Rivas said faculty and staff can support students as they make the emotional, cognitive, and behavioral changes that lead to success.

"It takes a campus community to make students successful," said Brown. "Trust, compassion, and respect are key to empowering students."

Marcella Garcia, with Adams State's Title V STEM program, talks with CAMP students about what to expect in college.

CAMP expands college access

Earlier in the week, orientation was held for 22 students in Adams State's new College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP), funded through a $2.1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education. CAMP aims to improve access to and success in higher education for those whose families perform migrant or seasonal agricultural work.

Sylvia Chavez (right) is very proud of her daughter, Karen Ortiz, who is embarking on her college adventure through Adams State's CAMP program.

Karen graduated in the top ten percent of her high school class in Yuma and has promised her mother she would graduate college. She is eager to join Adams State's color guard and begin her studies in cellular and molecular biology, with a minor in Spanish. Her goal: to become a cardio-thoracic surgeon specializing in pediatrics.

By Julie Waechter