LEMOORE — West Hills College Lemoore started off its fall semester last Friday, and campus life was once again buzzing with students making their way from class to class.

An information booth was set up outside the Student Union building for anybody who was lost or had any questions.

Dean of Students Jody Ruble was in charge of the booth and said he looked forward to the start of the new semester.

Ruble said part of the school’s goal this year is to help find ways to communicate with the students on campus.

“It can be hard to get to everybody and everybody has a story,” Ruble said.

Sophomore student Jonathan Maravilla is already well connected after attending WHCL for two years and prides himself on being an active member of the Leadership Academy Club on campus.

“I am a very fun, talented, outgoing person, and I have a lot of leadership skills myself. I thought it would be a perfect fit,” Maravilla said. “We get together and do a lot of events on campus and around the community."

Last year, the club was able to go to Disneyland with all expenses paid for by the school.

Karen Munoz, who is a freshman this year after graduating from Sierra Pacific High School, says she plans on joining the club as well.

Munoz decided to attend WHCL for its small, easy-going environment before transferring to a university. She described herself as "pretty shy" and hopes to get out of her comfort zone.

 “I feel like I’d open myself up more staying here than going straight [to a university],” said Munoz. “I just feel like it would be so much better if I could start off doing baby steps and then going further.”

Just like Munoz, fellow Sierra Pacific alum and incoming freshmen Kevin Kinyoun is starting his first year at WHCL and is already enjoying his time on campus.

Kinyoun is hoping to major in kinesiology, finish his two years at WHCL and then transfer to California State University, Fresno to pursue his dream of becoming a physical therapist.

"I met my counselor yesterday and they were very helpful, explaining how I can transfer to a four year, so yeah the counselors here are pretty good,” said Kinyoun.

So far, Kinyoun likes his classes, but admits he is not a big fan of math.

“I talked to my counselor and it’s a big part of the kinesiology major, so I’m going to have to freshen up on the math a little bit,” he said.

To help kick-start the new fall semester, the college will be hosting a barbecue from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday as a welcome back event. The event is free to attend. 

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