Student guides lead Warren on day 1 experience

At 10 a.m. – a sunny Tuesday morning – on July 1 Kent State University’s new president, Beverly Warren, set out for her first tour of the campus.

 On her first day as president Warren, along with Dennis Eckart, chairman of the Board of Trustees, wanted a proper tour of campus.

 The two met with Kent State Flash Guides under the arch on the Esplanade and told them they wanted the same tour that potential students get when coming to campus for the first time.

 The first stop of the tour was in Rockwell Hall where Champaigne Powell, sophomore fashion merchandising major, gave a brief history of the building and spoke about the highlights of the Fashion School.

 The group then led Warren and Eckart to Flash Guide Reggie Jones, a sophomore interpersonal communication major, in front of Cartwright Hall.

 Jones said that part of the campus has a special meaning to him.

 “I wanted to give the front campus part of the tour because it was one of the first places I went into a lecture hall,” he said.

 Warren, Eckart and the growing group of Flash Guides made their way past the “Behind the Brain Plaza” located near Merrill Hall.

 The next stop on the tour was Taylor Hall to get a small lesson about May 4 and the May 4th Memorial from junior finance major and Flash Guide Josh Jenkins.

 Jenkins described Warren as “welcoming” and “personable” and he said he would love to see her engaged and active with students during the upcoming school year.

 “I think May 4th is really important,” Jenkins said. “Not just to Kent State but our country as a whole.”

 After Taylor Hall, the tour moved past the MACC and the library to Eastway where Warren got a small lesson about the residence hall and Destination Kent State.

 When the tour concluded Warren, Eckart and the Flash Guides sat down for lunch in the Hub.

 Warren entered the Kent State Student Center with a big smile on her face while surrounded by Kent State Flash Guides.  After a walking tour of the whole campus, President Warren arranged a lunch with Kent State student leaders.

  “The best part was the enthusiasm of the tour guides,” Eckart said, who then went on to say how he could see why students chose Kent State.

 He then offered high praise for the new president’s potential on her first day.

 “Bev Warren is going to be a student magnet,” Eckart added. “Students will love her.”

 During the lunch, Warren talked with the students and listened to each Flash Guide explain their personal experiences at Kent. At times, she sat back and simply observed the interactions and the conversations between the students.  

 Senior communications studies major Alyssa Mazey said she and the other Flash Guides were excited to be a part of President Warren’s first day.

 “We all thrive on leadership and we all love this university,” Mazey said.  “I found it almost refreshing that you could sit down and have a conversation with her and she made you feel like she actually cared about you and what’s going on and about the university.  It’s very cool for an administrator to have that personal relationship with students.”

Throughout lunch, the Flash Guides discussed experiences they’ve had while at Kent including freshmen move-in day, different classes and majors, and the responsibilities of being a Flash Guide.

 “I really like how she is very excited to start this new journey here at Kent state and she is going to use her life experiences to do great things here at Kent State,” Jones said. “She said right now she is focused on the present and not focused on the future too much. She is going to live in the moment and just do great things here at Kent State.”

 Senior educational studies major Jordyn Kovolyan had the privilege of spending the day with President Warren. 

 “Her ability to stop and talk to anyone is pretty unique and memorable,” Kovolyan said.  “She would stop and talk to not only faculty and staff but students and non-students who use our campus, which is a really cool thing.”

 Throughout her first six months, President Warren is doing a listening tour in order for her to meet new people and build a strong understanding of Kent State. 

 “I’m just like the freshman coming in,” Warren said at lunch.  “I’m really looking forward to the new experiences.”

Contact Jenna at [email protected]. Contact Kristen at [email protected]