R.A. Making Students Feel Welcome on Campus
Joy Moore found a warm welcome when she arrived as a freshman in UC Merced'sinaugural class in 2005, and not just on campus.
"Some people overheard my friends and me talking about UC Merced when we were downtown one day," she said. "We ended up sitting down and having a 30-minute conversation with them."
This year, she extends the same welcome to other students as a resident assistant in Valley Terraces housing. Moore, a biological sciencesmajor from Corona, takes her turn making rounds to ensure safety, and works with other resident assistants to develop activities with specific goals.
For example, they're planning a fiesta with a live band for March 17. They've also had Valentine card-making activities, CPR certification, a bowling night and a "Diversity Ice Cream Social." Moore goes beyond the call of duty by remembering birthdays and holidays for the 22 residents in her hall. She likes it enough that she applied to do the job for another year, she said.
She also manages to balance other activities, like helping start a UC Merced target-shooting club, involvement with an off-campus church group, challenging classes like chemistry and calculus and volunteering with the UC Merced Police Department Mentoring Program.
"I got to wear the bobcat suit at one mentoring program event - that was really fun," she said. "And we have cleanup day coming up on March 17, where we will clean and beautify an area in South Merced. I'm super excited. I should be able to fit that in before we start decorating for the fiesta."
Her family has visited campus and seen first-hand how she is thriving here. In fact, it was her father who planted the idea of UC Merced in her head. An employee at the UC Irvine Central Plant, he'd heard about Merced's operational innovations. Moore said the new campus small size and newness attracted her.
"My dad was so excited for me to attend UC Merced," she said.