WSU welcomes first students post-COVID

Freshman, transfer students share excitement to be part of Coug family



Freshman Antonio Castillo said he is excited to meet new people on campus.

MOLLY WILK, Evergreen reporter

Incoming freshman Antonio Castillo said he originally applied to WSU as a safety school, but after seeing the support offered by the university, he changed his decision. 

Castillo plans to major in architecture and said he was excited by the opportunity to connect with current students and faculty members from his program. He said WSU was the most welcoming of the schools he considered and that support helped make his decision. 

Castillo, originally from Edmonds, Washington, spent his summer catching up with friends and getting ready to move across the state. He said that after losing his senior year to COVID-19, he is ready to get on campus and meet new people.

Castillo is looking forward to the exciting atmosphere of football games, getting to expand his social circle and getting started in some of his classes. He said despite the excitement, he is most worried about having to be proactive in making friends. 

“It’s a lot more dependent on what I do. So if I’m not putting myself out there, if I’m not trying new things, I’m not gonna have that great of a time,” he said. “I won’t be forced into these positions to meet people like I was in high school.” 

Despite initial hesitations about the university, Castillo said he is eagerly awaiting the new opportunities and already has snow boots for the winter. 

“From all the people I know who’ve gone to WSU, like former teachers … I haven’t heard a single person who was disappointed going here,” he said. 

Similarly, junior transfer student Jacob Leggett wanted to continue his education while getting the traditional campus experience. Leggett transferred from Olympic College in Bremerton, Washington. 

Studying mechanical engineering, Leggett said the resources offered in the area, such as Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, were a big reason he decided to transfer. 

Jacob Leggett, a transfer student majoring in mechanical engineering, is excited for the hands-on opportunities he will have as a student at WSU.


He said he looks forward to getting involved in engineering clubs and finally getting some more hands-on experience after COVID-19. 

“It’s been so hard doing online and using online simulations,” he said. “I’m really excited to visit the engineering labs and do some hands-on work instead of staring into a computer screen.” 

Outside of academics, Leggett said he’s looking forward to the social aspect of being on campus. He’s also excited for Cougar athletics, specifically baseball and football.

Leggett said after moving to Pullman about a month ago, it was difficult to adjust to not having his family by his side. However, he quickly realized they were only a phone call away and can support him from home. 

His brother, a WSU alum, is a big reason Leggett chose WSU. Leggett said he is looking forward to inviting his brother back to campus and getting to share the experience with him again. 

Leggett said he does not believe there is reason to be a Coug if you are not willing to take on the university spirit. 

“My preconception of being a Coug is having pride and spirit that you made it to Washington State,” he said. “From what I’ve seen from other students, they take very large pride in the fact that they are a Cougar.”