Guest column

Welcome to the new school year! The Resource and Outreach Programs (ROP) is a group of seven offices that strive to provide information, entertainment, advocacy, activities and peer education to Western’s many students; we do this by offering nearly 125 events that you cannot find anywhere else on campus.  The ROP is staffed by a dedicated team of Associated Students employees who come into work every day with the drive and passion to make your experience at Western better in whatever way possible. A sample of events that ROP offices put on throughout the year include: the Veteran Outreach  Center’s “Veteran’s Day Ceremony” in November, the Queer Resource Center’s “Drag Show” in February, the Legal Information Center’s year-long “Know Your Rights” events, the Women’s Center’s “Vagina Memoirs” in February, the Disability Outreach Center’s “Disability Awareness Week” in April, the Social Issues Resource Center’s year-long stereotype busting workshops, and the Sexual Awareness Center’s “Condom Fashion Show” in May.

Aside from planning amazing, free events throughout the year, every one of our offices is open regularly throughout the school year to provide you with a safe space to seek out the services our offices provide.  Some services that we provide include legal help, information on sexually transmitted diseases and safe sex, veteran’s benefits, disability accommodation information, women’s, sexual minority, gender minority and ethnic minority empowerment, community, and thoughtful discussion. Each office is also equipped with an extensive resource library (books, magazines, DVDs) that is linked to the Western Library system. If you are interested in, have a question about, or are intrigued about any of the Resource and Outreach Programs’ seven offices, stop by — we would love to chat with you.

We hope that at some point we get the chance to meet you in person.  Last year, more than 11,000 students attended our events, so there is a great chance that at least one of us will get to talk to you before school ends. Have a fantastic, safe year. Study hard, but remember that a significant part of college takes place outside of the classroom in events put on by the Associated Students and the Resource and Outreach Programs, so enjoy it while you’re here!

All of our offices are located on the fifth floor of the Viking Union. If you would rather reach us through email or by phone, feel free to call me personally at 360.650.6127 or go to our website at http://as.wwu.edu/rop and find the email/phone number of the specific office that you are trying to get ahold of.