The Welcome Brigade is an aspiring organization designed to help students transferring to Marshall University from its satellite campuses adjust to the new and different environment.
The transition to a larger campus can be overwhelming, and that is why Morgan Conley, mental health specialist at Marshall’s Counseling Center, helped start the Welcome Brigade.
“I’ve been wanting to do something that would be an outreach for students that have been struggling with the transition into college,” Conley said. “Even though they might be a sophomore, it’s kind of like a freshmen experience, because they weren’t on the main campus. If you’ve ever been to the South Charleston campus, it’s two buildings. There’s not even a cafeteria.”
Jennifer Henning, student resource specialist at the South Charleston satellite campus, contacted Conley over the summer with her idea for the Welcome Brigade.
“The satellite campuses have the ability to let students do their first year there if they’re not ready for the main campus here,” Conley said. “Jennifer is very hands on with her students, and she wanted them to have a smooth transition to Marshall. It’s kind of like being a freshman all over again, and you miss all that Week of Welcome that gets you connected to everybody. They did it, but it’s much less than what we do here.”
So far, the group has five regular members, but they are looking to grow. Members meet every Thursday in Prichard Hall at 3:30 p.m. Once seven members join, the group can apply for funding from the Student Government Association. They are mainly focusing on recruiting more students, and they discuss fundraising ideas.
“The Welcome Brigade is fun,” Conley said. “I really enjoy those experiences where you get outside of your office and get to see students and see all the things they do.”
While Conley is advising the students now, she said she hopes that once they complete the trainings, next year she will be able to step back and they can govern themselves.
Amanda Larch can be contacted at [email protected]