The Baker Orange

Revamped Salon courses focus on students’ well-being

Junior+Madison+Brown+and+Dean+of+Students+Cassy+Bailey+draw+questions+from+a+bag+written+by+freshmen+in+a+Salon+101+class.+Image+by+Elizabeth+Hanson.
Junior Madison Brown and Dean of Students Cassy Bailey draw questions from a bag written by freshmen in a Salon 101 class. Image by Elizabeth Hanson.

Junior Madison Brown and Dean of Students Cassy Bailey draw questions from a bag written by freshmen in a Salon 101 class. Image by Elizabeth Hanson.

Elizabeth Hanson

Elizabeth Hanson

Junior Madison Brown and Dean of Students Cassy Bailey draw questions from a bag written by freshmen in a Salon 101 class. Image by Elizabeth Hanson.

Story by Angela Bober, Writer

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Salon 101 and 102 classes are now under the direction of the Office of Student Affairs so that the classes can become more focused on improving Baker students’ first-year experience.

“For the folks in Student Affairs, our masters and doctorates are in student development,” Dean of Students Cassy Bailey said. “It is really helpful to have people who understand the psychological development of students.”

Now that these Salon classes are under new direction, they may grow in new ways.

“Student Affairs is the support system for students,” Director of Student Life Randy Flowers said. “It comes down to putting the class in line with the tools it needs to be successful.”

Instead of traditional academic content, the introductory Salon classes are focused more on the well being of students and their overall behavior.

“Research has shown that a first-year program helps improve retention,” Flowers said.

Specifically, Salon 101 and 102 can help with monitoring student progress.

“Salon gives us early warnings about certain students,” Bailey said. “We meet with all the Salon teachers so that we know how the kids are doing and if any are skipping a lot of classes.”

This means that students have more opportunities to connect with other students outside of a typical classroom setting.

“There are three things I think students should take out of Salon, which is the bond of a freshman class, knowing you have two people in your corner with your Salon teacher and leader, and the welcome-to-college experience,” Bailey said.

Salon 101 and 102 classes also read a common book every semester, and this year it is No Impact Man<em>No Impact Man</em> by Colin Beavan. The author and his family try to stop polluting the world by only riding bikes, not taking elevators and not having a television. by Colin Beavan. The author and his family try to stop polluting the world by only riding bikes, not taking elevators and not having a television. No Impact Man by Colin Beavan. The author and his family try to stop polluting the world by only riding bikes, not taking elevators and not having a television.

“We choose a book that is going to spark interest,” French Professor and Salon Instructor Erin Joyce said.

This year’s Salon classes have already seen a presentation from the Sexual Trauma and Abuse Care Center, learned about the tutoring center and discussed how they have adjusted so far to college life.

“There has already been a positive change with bringing in the care center,” Joyce said.

While the fall Salon class normally focuses on an introduction to college, the spring course is more about being healthy and focusing on the well being of students.

“The course is a welcome to college experience and also exposes students to the expectations of college,” Joyce said.

With the change, there will be some negatives, but there may also be a surplus of positives.

“It’s an evolving process,” Flowers said. “Our students are enjoying it, and it’s continue to grow the experience here at Baker for the better.”

About the Photographer
Elizabeth Hanson, Editor

Elizabeth is a junior from Leawood. She enjoys black-and-white photography and landscapes. She is a public relations and spanish double-major and also...

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