Many have seen their purple polo shirts and pictures in the cafeteria, but they are most known for their smiling faces that greet the incoming freshmen during the summer. Yes, the Badger Connection guides are back and will prepare for the multiple freshmen orientations over the summer. You may be wondering, who they will be. Director Mike Freyaldenhoven, Assistant Director of Student Involvement Katelyn Whitty and Interns Iriel Evans and Emilee Adams are the ones calling the shots and choosing the best applicants for this year’s Badger Connection.
Badger Connection guide applications were due Feb. 1, and the lengthy interview process has begun for 2018. According to the Badger Connection team, there will be a group interview on Feb. 16, along with one-on-one interviews meant to last a minimum of 30 minutes. With 53 applicants, the team is hoping to select an estimated 26 guides. Junior, Emilee Adams, states that they are looking for a mixture of students; a group that will represent every aspect of campus life.
The program is also changing a few factors in hopes to keep students applying. Instead of requiring the student guides to spend a month training on campus over the summer, there will be two training sessions held: one in March, and one in April. This change will benefit students who would like to complete internships, or work during the summer without lowering the salary of the guides. The Center for Student Involvement announced Wednesday night that the Presidential Cabinet has approved of the Badger Connection's August session, instead of the usual three sessions in June. As many as 400 incoming freshmen will be at the August session, along with Badger Connection guides.
Overall, the organization continues to make improvements this year. Evans said that she and Adams are working extremely hard to rebuild the program and make it something that students want to participate in. This year, the number of applicants has increased. This has left the Badger Connection team feeling hopeful. Adams exclaims, “I want everyone to come in, and leave loving Spring Hill whether you’re a guide or a prospective student.” The new Badger Connection team will be announced Feb. 26, and the group will begin training shortly afterward.