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By FLORENCE CAZENAVE fmc007@latech



Born or made, the new leaders of Tech are just starting their role as school representatives.

The new Orientation Student Leaders for 2007, elected Jan. 11, are Michelle Bell, a sophomore family and child studies major; Blaine Calahan, a junior biology major; T.J. Chandler, a sophomore forestry major; Katie Cooper, a sophomore psychology major.

 John Dean, a sophomore mechanical engineering major; Lauren Eaton, a sophomore biology major; Adam Grisz, a senior speech communications major; Mallory Guin, a sophomore general stuies major; Cynthia Halwick, a junior biology major; Hillary Miller, a junior biology major.

Cole Napper, a sophomore psychology major; Richard Nolen, a sophomore communications design major; Sara Sullivan, a junior speech communications major; Claudia Thomas, a senior family and child studies major; Arinthea Tillman, a junior medical technology major, and Scott Whitford, a sophomore biology major.

Travis Napper, director of orientation and special programs, said students were elected based on interpersonal and leadership skills, a GPA of at least 2.5 and campus involvement. 

Napper said the new staff had a great start at the Orientation Student Leaders retreat Saturday and Sunday at Dry Creek.

Whitford said the retreat brought them together as a team and it was a chance to learn about other people.

“The retreat helped emphasize strengths and hone teamwork and communication skills,” Whitford said.

Napper said this is his first year as director and plans to bring some new ideas and new activities.

 “We don’t have anything specific yet, but there will definitely be some new skits. The schedule will be tweaked, hopefully for better efficiency.”

Napper said the orientation student leaders will spend the next month and a half preparing for the Southern Regional Orientation Workshop.

“They will compete in the skit competition we do every year so they will be preparing for that,” Napper said.

Erica Timmons, student assistant director of orientation and a senior mathematics education major, is looking forward to participating in new contests.

“We’ll be competing in other competitions like T-shirt, banner and spirit competitions,” Timmons said.

Calahan is not only looking forward to participating in the shows and presentations, but he is also eager to be working with the other new student leaders.

“It’s exciting to be able to have 15 of your peers to be working with along with Travis and Erica,” Calahan said. He also said he has wanted to be an orientation leader since his freshman year.

“It was something I felt I could bring a lot to the table and do a good job,” Calahan said. “On my freshman [orientation], I saw the skills in my orientation leader and felt I could do the same.”

Miller said what made her try out was to take one more step in getting involved in campus and encourage other students to try out.

She said, “Even if you don’t make it, in the try-out process you meet so many other people that [the process] itself is a good experience.”

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