FAIRMONT, W.Va. – Pierpont Community and Technical College held a “Student Appreciation Day” at the Advanced Technology Center in Fairmont on Tuesday.
Students, faculty, staff and their families were able to stop in from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. for food and games. There was a full buffet, snow cones, popcorn, a DJ and a caricature artist all for free. Staff members said this appreciation day is ‘especially important’ because of how tough this year has been with the pandemic.
“I just felt this is something we may need for the students and their family, but also for the facility and staff who had to work through a pandemic environment for the past 15 months,” Anthony Hancock, President of Pierpont Community and Technical College, said. “This is just a way for us to find some normalcy as we move into a post- pandemic environment.”
Hancock has only been President of the college since January, but said since he’s a people person, he enjoyed the idea of an appreciation day. Hancock hopes appreciation day is something they will do each semester moving forward, and will continue to do even after he is gone.
Since Governor Jim Justice has relaxed some COVID-19 restrictions, the college was able to hold their pinning ceremony in person this semester. However, Pierpont’s graduation, scheduled for late May, will be virtual.
Hancock said this is one step closer to normalcy and hopes it will lead to a successful in-person semester in the fall.
“We still follow social distancing guidelines, we’re still wearing masks inside,” said Hancock. “We are really promoting people getting vaccinated. It’s not that were forcing people to, we just would hope that they would be more aware of their surroundings, because if we’re going to move into a full face to face online institution in the fall, we would hope people would be cognitive and aware that vaccines do work. And so, this is the beginning of having that type of conversation.”
The event was coordinated by Pierpont’s Student Government Association with President Hancock’s office.