Explore Waco program encourages student engagement in local community

By Melanie Pace | Broadcast Reporter

Dr. Jeff Doyle, dean of Student Learning and Engagement, started Explore Waco as an initiative to get Baylor students active in the Waco community.

“In the last ten years the city of Waco has grown in leaps and bounds by what there is to offer,” Doyle said.

As a part of this initiative, students are encouraged to make the most out of their Baylor experience by visiting a number of sites listed on a bucket list on the Baylor website.

“We know that going to Baylor is more than just what is on campus,” Doyle said. “The city is also a part of their education.”

Some of the sites included on the list include Cameron Park, Jubilee Food Market and Lake Waco. Students are to visit each site, post a selfie and tag #wacobucketlist in order to be eligible to win prizes like Baylor mugs and t-shirts.

Doyle said he knows the challenges in getting students involved in campaigns like this one.

“Life is a balance of being supported and taking challenging steps,” Doyle said. For students who are nervous to get out of their comfort zone, he said he hopes the community at Baylor is supportive enough to give them confidence.

In the future, though, Doyle said he would like for Explore Waco to be run by students because it gives them practical experience. He also hopes a student-driven organization will encourage other students to get involved.

“If it’s students fighting for something they believe in I think they will ultimately engage other students more often,” Doyle said. “We hope they’ll take the risk and try something different.”