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Community Engagement and Service

2016 First CLAS Leaders

Get to know the 2016 First CLAS Leaders! (pictures coming soon.......)

Gabby - Student Coordinator


Hometown: Snohomish, WA
Year: Senior
Majors: Anthropology & Psychology
Fun Fact: “I am the first in my family to attend college"
Advice for First year studnents: Try everything!!

How has First CLAS helped you in your career at Linfield?:
"First CLAS enabled me to be brave. As I mentioned earlier in the questions, I knew no one when I came to Linfield. Even though I am normally a chatty, outgoing person, I couldn’t help being nervous coming into a new situation where I knew nothing. I was also able to orient myself on campus so I knew where all of my classes were and where to go if I needed anything. With everything I learned and took away from the program, I was able to start my first year off strong. I talked to the departments I was thinking of being a part of, I helped other lost freshman, and I went to Third St. with people from the program as well as other friends I had made. I can’t put to justice everything the program allowed me to do as well as everything you learn.”

What does First CLAS mean to you?
"First CLAS to me has so many different meanings. It can mean community, friendship, a beginning, service, collaboration and so much more. The program allows for an ample amount of learning that each day you can come away with more than just one lesson. When participants and leaders are exposed to new situations or problems, the ability to discuss these experiences with other members allows for personal and group reflections; which in the end let you take home more than just one point of view.


Deizhanna - Group Leader 


Hometown: Ewa Beach, HI
Year: Senior
Major: Psychology
Fun Fact: “I hate the smell of left out tomato products (ketchup, spaghetti sauce, etc.).”
Advice for First-Year Students: Take advantage of all the leadership opportunities and resources that Linfield can offer you

How has First CLAS helped you in your career at Linfield?:
"First CLAS has helped me by not only introducing me to many resources that Linfield has to offer, but also by helping me step out of my comfort zone; encouraging me to get involved with both my Linfield and McMinnville community.”

What does First CLAS mean to you?:
"First CLAS to me is an opportunity that allowed me to learn about what Linfield has to offer their students. Every year I hope that the participants also find that Linfield has many opportunities for them, and First CLAS is one of those programs that will let you do so."


Garrett - Group Leader


Hometown: Boise, ID
Year: Junior
Major: International Relations
Fun Fact: I am a Kemper Scholar and I worked and lived in Chicago last summer.
Advice for First-Year Students: Have fun and meet people

How has First CLAS helped you in your career at Linfield?:
"First CLAS gave me a platform to jump into my college experience with. I loved that I did it and love the opportunity to help other incoming freshmen deal with the transition.”

What does First CLAS mean to you?:
“First CLAS means to be a student leader in the participants’ respective class. It also means to me to have really close friends right before school even starts. It is time before the madness of college starts to be aware of the rules and how to operate under a new atmosphere.”


Justice- Group Leader


Hometown: Keizer, OR
Year: Sophomore
Major: Elementary Education
Fun Fact: “I’ve visited 7 states in the U.S
Advice for First-Year Students: Try as many new clubs and activities as possible because that’s what helps to make a more positive experience at Linfield and you’ll meet so many new people.

How has First CLAS helped you in your career at Linfield?:
"First CLAS has helped me to be more settled at Linfield. I met so many people in First CLAS that I always saw someone I knew around campus afterwards and it helped me to feel more connected and settled at Linfield.”

What does First CLAS mean to you?
"To me, First CLAS is all about service and seeing growth in yourself. At the beginning of the week I started out one way but by the end of my time I came out with a better understanding of what service meant to me as an individual.”


Kalkidan  - Group Leader 


Hometown: Dayton, OR
Year: Sophomore
Major: Education
Advice for First-Year Students: Its ok to get out of your comfort zone and try things you normally wouldn’t.

How has First CLAS helped you in your career at Linfield?:
"It has helped me by letting me know what is available in McMinnville, such as restaurants and stores.”

 What does First CLAS mean to you?:
"It’s a great way to make friends and it teaches you the importance of serving as well as leadership."


Kyler  - Group Leader

Hometown: West Linn, OR
Year: Junior
Major: Finance
Fun fact: I have travelled to 20 US National Parks

Advice for First-Year Students: Keep the door to your room open, and talk to other freshmen with their doors open. Also, you can’t buy friends, but you can buy a Frisbee or a soccer ball ;)

 How has First CLAS helped you in your career at Linfield?:
"I think First CLAS has made me more keenly aware of how so many people can come from so many different backgrounds and have completely different life stories, yet are so similar as well. It’s a cliché, but it was something that I realized through the work we did in First CLAS and something I have taken with me in other volunteer projects, as well as class projects and in my job.”

What does First CLAS mean to you?:
"It means I’m going to eat a lot of Thai Country."


Raisa  - Group Leader

Hometown: Hillsboro, OR
Year: Junior
Major: Business Management
Fun Fact: (I) Could most likely beat you at Harry Potter trivia

Advice for First-Year Students: Get to know your professors before you need their help.

 How has First CLAS helped you with your career at Linfield?:
"First CLAS always helps me start the school year right, with a positive attitude and excited to get back to being a part of the Linfield community. It’s also helped me to be a more outgoing person and take initiative when needed.”

What does First CLAS mean to you?:
"First CLAS to me means so much because without it I would have had a very different first year at Linfield. Making friends through First CLAS made me have faith that I could make it through college and have a fun time with people that I care about. I’m also so grateful for the opportunity it lent me to get to know members of the McMinnville community and help them out."


Shelby  - Group Leader

Hometown: Boise, ID
Year: Junior
Major: Mass Communication
Fun Fact: “I’ve high-fived Kelly Clarkson.”

Advice for First-Year Students: "Get involved in everything you possibly can! I whole-heartedly believe that the more involved you are, the better your experience will be. College is a time to learn about you and the best way to do so is by getting involved, trying new things and meting different people."

How has First CLAS helped you in your career at Linfield?
"First CLAS has taught me numerous things throughout my now third year in the program.  I have learned how to overcome fear, how to utilize my connections and how to stay involved in a way that fits my schedule. Building connections and trying new things is what these years at college are all about. I would definitely say that this program has helped me branch out to really get to know people and understand how to build community and stay engaged in my own way."

What does First CLAS mean to you?
"For me First CLAS simply means action. This program helps participants dive into the community (on and off campus) and allows them to not only take action to help others, but it allows also take action for themselves by getting involved. First CLAS is the first step toward practicing leadership and building community and connections."

Tristan  - Group Leader

Hometown: Roseburg, OR
Year: Senior
Majors: Health Education & Nursing
Fun Fact: "I have two siblings and our ages are consecutive: 19, 20, 21."

Advice for First-Year Students: "Be involved in as many things on campus as you can!  There are so many different opportunities and it is an amazing feeling to find something that you are passionate about Linfield.  Going to events helps you meet like-minded people that become life-long friends, it also helps you get your foot in the door for future opportunities that pertain to your major."

How has First CLAS helped you in your career at Linfield?
"Having this opportunity really helped me find my passion for service and helped me learn who to contact when I wanted to take on a new project."

What does First CLAS mean to you?
"First CLAS in the reason why my Linfield experience has been so positive.  Having the opportunity to meet new people as a transfer student really helps me feel more peaceful about life at a big school, rather than a community college.  Being able to meet people, volunteer with them, speak with alumni, and meet with community members made me feel like I belonged on campus, which was really important to my success as a Wildcat thus far."


Jesus - Assistant Leader

 Hometown: Gresham, OR
Year: Sophomore
Major: Biochemistry
Fun Fact: "I have 10 siblings and am the 1st in my family to go to college.

Advice for First Year Students: "Surround yourself with good friends that will help you succeed."

How has First CLAS helped you in your career at Linfield?
"I learned how to communicate more effectively when meeting new people which has helped in my first year."

What does First CLAS mean to you?
"An engaging group of friends that serve the community and help each other out."


Lex- Assistant Leader

Hometown: Vancouver, WA

Year: Sophomore
Major: International Relations
Fun Fact: "I really really really love mac and cheese. Its mentioned in my bio on Twtiter and Instagram, as well as featured as the background on my phone."

Advice for First-Year Students: "Do everything that you can. Some people can handle multiple clubs and sports at the same time while also finding time to socialize and study, but if you can't handle all of that, you don't have to, but do as much as you can. Branching out into the Linfield community is extremely rewarding and the people here are just as motivated and excited to be here as you are, enjoy it and make connections!"

How has First CLAS helped you in your career at Linfield?
"After participating in First CLAS I was amazed at how much less scary college seemed to me. First CLAS provided me with a vital support system at Linfield and helped me better utilize my skills to find success in school and sports. I improved my leadership skills greatly and became a more confident, motivated, and kind human being."

What does First CLAS mean to you?
"First CLAS holds a special place in my heart because without the amazing experiences I had while participating in the program, from the community service to meeting many great people, I honestly don't know how successful I would have been in my first year of college. I met my very best friends at Linfield through First CLAS and I couldn't imagine my college experience without them."


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