Portrait of President Dr. Christine Sobek
Christine J. Sobek, Ed.D.

September brings changing temperatures and scenery. While these changes happen around us, students are settling in to the routine of a still-new academic year on college campuses. This is certainly the case at all four of Waubonsee’s campuses.

Like many colleges, Waubonsee has a tradition of welcoming new and returning students with Welcome Tents. Employees sign up for shifts and greet students with a friendly smile, handbooks, and other materials, as well as information to help students locate their classes and other resources. During one of my shifts a young woman asked for help finding a classroom and said to us, “I’m so scared.” We were quick to reassure her and walk her to class however it reminded me how frightening it can be to start something new, like college. And this feeling isn’t limited to those who start college directly after high school.

Chad Lockman is a Waubonsee alumnus who served in the United States Marine Corps for 8 years before taking classes at Waubonsee in 2013. He served around the world, including a tour in Iraq. Though he was absolutely ready to face college after his time in the military and in combat, as is often the case for non-traditional students, there was one thing he was not looking forward to - “I dreaded being the old guy in the class.”

Throughout my career, I have been challenged to accept new opportunities – at times with little preparation. Many of us are familiar with the Boy Scouts of America motto, Be prepared! These two little words are so helpful when facing many of life’s challenges. No, we won’t always know everything to expect when starting something new however we can still be prepared by doing research, being ready to ask questions, and being ready to accept help.

Waubonsee offers many events and open houses that are open to the public as well as numerous activities geared for students. These are wonderful opportunities to get to know our Waubonsee campuses, our faculty and staff, and our students. You can find college events at calendar.waubonsee.edu and athletic events at gochiefs.com.

September is National Preparedness Month. People around the country are taking steps to prepare themselves to face unfortunate things that could happen to them in the future. They are examining their own environments and making decisions to be better prepared for anything. Why not take some time now to assess your environment and make the decision to prepare yourself for your future. Get to know Waubonsee better by attending upcoming events. Check out accelerated class options at waubonsee.edu/accelerated and get started on something new.