On-campus events return to welcome week at GV


GVL / Annabelle Robinson

Payton Brazzil, Staff Writer

After a long year of virtual learning and a quiet campus, Grand Valley State University is regaining a sense of normalcy. However, this comeback has not been without its challenges. 

While the pandemic is not over, some of the regulations have been lifted. Students and faculty will see the return of traditional classes, in-person events and sports games.  

Due to the revised COVID-19 regulations this year, new and returning students have more opportunities to connect with the community. Students can discover these opportunities through word of mouth, posters, social media or through the Office of Student Life on the GVSU webpage. 

The Office of Student Life focuses on student involvement through inclusive events, services and environments, according to their website. Following move-in, Campus Life Night, Laker Kick-Off Party, Cookout & Carnival are outdoor events all GVSU students are encouraged to attend. 

The Office of Student Life said they encourage students to participate in these community events, while also staying safe.

“We do everything in our power to get students involved, allowing them to discover their passions, as well as themselves, throughout their college careers,” said Grad Assistant of Student Organizations and Leadership Development, Olivia Witsaman. “This year, we are happy to help create memorable moments for our students, encouraging them to experience all of the wonderful opportunities GVSU has to offer with student safety being at the forefront of every event The Office of Student Life programs.” 

Witsaman explained that The Office of Student Life is following all CDC, state, and GVSU safety guidelines at each of the events. They encourage students to complete and pass their daily self-assessments before attending events and make sure all students are wearing masks/face coverings indoors to prevent the spread. 

Not only does the Office of Student Life encourage students to go to these events but resident assistants (RAs) do as well. RAs, trained peers who coordinate activities in dorms, are extremely knowledgeable about student events. Miranda Wojda, an RA in Ott Living Center, said she encourages her residents and other freshmen to go to GVSU events.

“We all try to tell our residents to go to all the activities, especially during Welcome Week, so they can get to know each other and make new friends,” said Wojda. “We always promise that they’ll have fun and maybe get free stuff.”

Wojda explained that since incoming freshmen have been virtual for over a year, they are very eager to attend events and connect to the community. 

After a virtual year, the GVSU community is ready to engage with others in person, while also staying safe. With the help of Student Life and RAs, students can easily find these opportunities to get involved and enjoy their college experience.