Following the recommendations identified by the acronym, WARM, you can inspire students to reach for ultimate success from the moment they return to or begin their training.
By Dr. Fred Mayo, CHE, CHT
Last month, we discussed honoring and celebrating differences; this month, we will talk about ways to begin a semester by making our students feel special—not always something we think about it, given all the other tasks that face us in September, the time most U.S. colleges begin the year again. There are four major strategies: welcoming, asking, reminding and mixing it up, or WARM. Now might be a good time to consider adopting one or all of them.
Welcoming people has always been a fundamental principle of hospitality. As chefs, we welcome people by feeding them or otherwise offering them food. As teachers, we think about the first class of the term, and we do it well.
This year might be a useful time to think about welcoming them back to the institution, however. As your students come back to the campus after a summer break or an internship/coop/apprentice/work experience, how do you greet them? Do you look for ways to welcome them back to school? Do you invite them to notice all the changes that have been made over the summer? Do you focus on providing each of them with a compliment? Or ask about accomplishments? Have you reviewed the organization of your office and considered rearranging it to be more welcoming to new and returning students? These and other questions will help you think about how to welcome your new and returning students to the campus.