Hundreds of local kindergartners invaded the Quad and got an early taste of what college is like during the annual KinderCaminata Friday.
The 1,200 future graduates of the class of 2030 were accompanied by their parents and teachers as they explored different stations with fun activities to participate in and people from different career options to meet.
The schools that attended were from the La Habra and Anaheim school districts. The Fullerton district was unable to be a part of it this year due to scheduling conflicts.
Though this event has been going on for 19 years, this year marks the first time that it was funded by the college. Prior to that, it had been done through the faculty.
“Thank goodness for the work of [Fullerton College President] Rajen Vurdien and the district we are now going to have KinderCaminata every single year,” said Diana Kyle, coordinator for KinderCaminata. “They’re going to pay for it now, so that’s a good thing.”
This accomplishment came after a longtime push for KinderCaminata to be an annual event and to finally be adopted by the college.
Both Kyle and A.S. President Jose Solano believe that Chris Lamm, another main coordinator, was a very important driving force to keep KinderCaminata going.
This year also marks the first event since Lamm’s death last year but Kyle and Solano feel like she would be proud with their work.
“She is out here looking down on us saying we did okay,” Kyle said.
KinderCaminata is not only an opportunity for young students and their parents but also one for research to be conducted, specifically on the lasting effects on children.
The impressions left on the visiting children and parents seem to be a postivie one. The reputation of KinderCaminata seems to be just as good as well. A family from Torrance, whose two girls aren’t part of either school district, came over to experience it for themselves.
“It’s great because this is a good experience for kids to actually come to a college,” said Diana Gama, who brought both her sister and daughter. “It gets kids excited and looking forward to coming to college at a really young age. They don’t do this type of thing in L.A., but it’d be a great idea to take back over there to do it for that community. ”
However, as successful as most people considered it to be, Solano feels like some imminent changes regarding administration need to be made to make for an even better experience.
“There’s some lack of communication between administration and the rest of us,” Solano said.
Solano notes that though everyone had been working on KinderCaminata for months and informed administration of the event far in advanced, none of the things they needed, including speakers and microphones, were available or set up.
“You’d think administration, the people who run the college, would be more likely to support this. That isn’t always the case,” Solano said. “What tends to happen with administration is they’re usually the obstacle for us to do anything.”