Raul Garcia/Tejano Tribune
The meet and greet, Soda with the President, took place at the Valle Verde Campus on Wednesday, March 16.
What was planned as a meet and greet with the President Dr. William Serata, turned into a town hall meeting
Preparations were made in the Valle Verde cafeteria annex with simple college themed silver, teal, and purple decorations which were put up by the office staff of the campus dean.
“The purpose of the visit is so that he is able to talk to the students, faculty and constitute groups about different aspects of the college,” said Dean, Dr. Jaime Farias,
“He wants to have a more intimate conversation with individuals as they drop by.”
Economics Club President, Clarissa Cervantes, was formulating questions to ask the president with her team but also said the topic was discussed in her government class.
“My classmates were talking about how supposedly tuition was increasing and they want to know why it is going up and what the money is going to fund,” said Cervantes.
Juan Pineda, faculty member, hopes to receive good news regarding growth in the department he works in.
“Dual credit enrollment is on the rise but we have the same group of employees,” said Pineda, “We need to prioritize or else the enrollments wouldn’t get done.”
Students, faculty, and staff gathered but Dr. Serata was late due to a call from a member of the board, which he later apologized for.
He greeted Dr. Farias and his staff and thanked them for the preparations.
He made his way to the stage to address the audience however a microphone, and podium were not set up so he spoke loudly out to the onlookers.
He opened the floor to questions but instead of making his way to the tables, he stood on stage which was not anticipated and the mic and podium were brought on stage halfway through the event.
He answered questions regarding weak Wi-Fi signals and slow internet connections, concerns veterans had about the registration process, goals the college wanted to meet, building improvements and additions among other topics.
When asked if we can expect more socials like this in the future, he replied,
“Yes, once in the fall and once in the spring. I also want to have unscheduled visits and walkabouts,” said Dr. Serata.
“Valle Verde is our largest campus so it doesn’t surprise me that this is also my largest crowd.
"I take the concerns very seriously and get excited about the progress we have to make.”