Close Menu

BUCS Bridge Pre-Orientation Program

The Building Unity and Cultivating Success (or, BUCS) Bridge Program is a pre-orientation program designed to serve first-year students from first-generation and/or underrepresented racial and ethnic population backgrounds. This five day program introduces incoming students to Whitworth's faculty, resources, and peers before first-year orientation begins. After the pre-orientation, participants may opt-in to our peer mentoring program to receive ongoing support from our peer guides and staff throughout their first year. Students involved in BUCS Bridge experience the benefits of community-building, gain skills in college navigation and further develop their multicultural identity. For more information about this program, contact Whit Jester at wjester@whitorth.edu or 509.777.4845.

Incoming first year students will receive an email inviting them to register. BUCS Bridge 2023 will take place Aug. 28 – Sept. 1.

Campus Resources

Learn More About the Program

Frequently Asked Questions

What is BUCS Bridge?

It is a pre-orientation program at Whitworth University designed to give first-generation and/or historically underrepresented racial and ethnic population (UREP) students a smooth and successful first year of college, beginning with pre-orientation. BUCS Bridge serves both first-year students and transfer students. The three pillars of BUCS Bridge are college navigation, community building and identity development. 

The pre-orientation program includes activities that help you familiarize yourself with campus, resources, and the community. You have the opportunity to move into your assigned room early, meet with faculty in your major, learn about how to apply for a job on campus, access mental health resources, understand your class schedule and course demands. In addition to making sure you feel prepared and confident as a college student, you will also have a built-in community through Peer Guides and fellow first year students like yourself! 

What is a Peer Guide?

Peer Guides are current Whitworth students that lead small groups of eight to 10 Protégés. They have knowledge and experience to help you find your way and be successful at Whitworth.

What is a Protégé?

That's you! As a participant in this program, you are called a Protégé. A Protégé is a person of outstanding talent who has been selected to receive personal guidance and support from a more experienced person to fulfill their greatest potential.

When is BUCS Bridge pre-orientation?

The pre-orientation takes place from Monday, Aug. 28-Friday, Sept. 1, 2023.

Will pre-orientation be on campus or virtual?

BUCS Bridge will align with the rest of the Whitworth campus and offer completely in-person services and activities. 

What is the pre-orientation schedule?

Monday, Aug. 28
9 a.m.-noon Check-in and Move-in
3-4 p.m. Small Group/Family Info Session
4-5 p.m. Campus Tours
5-6 p.m. Welcome Dinner
Tuesday, Aug. 29-Thursday, Sept. 31
8 a.m.-8 p.m. Activities, Meet & Greets, and Fun
Friday, Sept. 1
9 a.m.-3 p.m. Closing Activities

Can my parents come?

We will host a Family Welcome Session on Monday, Aug. 28, at 3 p.m. and then a Welcome Dinner at 5 p.m., which families are invited to attend. After the dinner ends at 6 p.m., families will need to say goodbye to their students.

For information regarding the Whitworth New Student Orientation, please visit: www.whitworth.edu/cms/news-and-events/orientation.

What do I get with my registration?

The BUCS Bridge $40 registration fee includes a BUCS Bridge t-shirt and helps us cover your housing and meals for the week as well as costs for events throughout the year.

What if I can't afford registration?

Please contact our office if the registration fee is a barrier for you at sdei@whitworth.edu or 509.777.4721.

What can I expect from my BUCS Bridge Pre-Orientation experience?

We will do small and large group activities so you can get acquainted with your peers and build community here at Whitworth. We will also be doing activities like a campus scavenger hunt, to get you familiarized with campus. Additionally, we will introduce you to services available at Whitworth, like career services for instance, and host a meet and greet with academic faculty. These are only a few of the things we will cover to give you a jump-start to college success.

Can I choose to attend pre-orientation but not take part in the mentoring program?

Yes. Protégés will have the opportunity to continue with the peer mentoring program for the entire first year but it is not required or mandatory.

What is the BUCS Mentoring Program?

After pre-orientation, students have the opportunity to continue BUCS Bridge through the mentorship program. Students who choose to continue with the program will be reached out to and will meet with their assigned Peer Guide throughout the school year and in their transition to Whitworth. These meetings are opportunities for students to share their highlights of college or struggles so that Peer Guides and staff can celebrate with students, or give them the resources and guidance they need.

Why should I participate in the BUCS Mentoring Program?

The first year college transition can be a challenging one. This program is designed specifically to provide support to first-year students through peer mentorship. A more seasoned, older student can provide guidance and tips on how to navigate classes, balance responsibilities, talk to professors and figure out life on campus! Protégés can expect to meet with their Peer Guide throughout the year, receive one-on-one support from staff, and cultivate community and sense of belonging with fellow first-year Pirates!

Where will I be sleeping?

Through BUCS Bridge, you will get to move into your residence hall room early! You will sleep in your regular housing during pre-orientation just like the rest of the academic year. For those who are living at home, we invite you to join us for all the day and evening activities. 

What do I need to pack for the year?

Our amazing friends in Whitworth's Residence Life & Housing put together a few helpful packing lists. Click on the links below for more information.

Am I responsible for getting to Whitworth?

Yes.

Do I need to attend Orientation if I am participating in BUCS Bridge pre-orientation?

Yes. Orientation and pre-orientation are separate and distinct programs. Each has unique information, outcomes and participants. It is very important you attend both. In fact, parts of Orientation are mandatory.

What is the contact information if I have questions or concerns?

For additional information, you may contact:

Front Desk

Student Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Hendrick Hall
sdei@whitworth.edu
509.777.4721

Whit Jester

BUCS Bridge Coordinator
Hendrick Hall 105
wjester@whitworth.edu
509.777.4845