For the past few months, the Director of New Student Orientation and his Assistant Director at our university have been (in his words), “Climbing the mountain” in preparation for summer orientation. This is such a good analogy. It is a massive undertaking to bring thousands of new students to a campus, teach them about the school, and make them feel comfortable in what will soon become their home away from home. Parents and students have been climbing the same mountain with the completion of classes, taking tests, checking off lists, and paying fees and deposits.
New Student Orientation is about to begin at WCU! Maybe you are about to participate in your college orientation too? If so, you will start from the proverbial base camp of the mountain to finally reach the top. The thought of visiting campus might have you wondering what to expect. Mountain climbers usually have a few key pieces of knowledge before they start the ascent. Here are some helpful hints to help:
1.) Smile and be friendly. Everyone is as nervous and self-conscious as you. Relax and have fun.
2.) Pack light. If it is an overnight orientation; keep it simple. You are not going on a safari.
3.) More for the girls – Dress comfortably. You will be going on a campus tour. Think about your feet. I know shoes are fun, however, think cute flat sandals, Sperry’s, or comfy sneakers – NOT heels!
4.) Dress in layers if you are inclined to be cold. Classrooms, computer labs, and auditoriums can be chilly. I will also add…this might be handy if you are going to a different climate zone than home. Check out the weather forecast.
5.) Bring a “carry all” bag. You don’t want to be known as the kid that kept dropping and fussing with papers. In that bag should be a pen or pencil!!
6.) Refer to the list. If the Orientation office has a recommended list of things to bring, refer to it!! A list is probably on your orientation website.
7.) Figure out the parking situation in advance.
8.) Turn off your cell phone while you are in your orientation sessions, and in between. Why in between? So, you can look up and meet someone. Guess what? That text, Snap, or Instagram post will wait.
9.) Don’t walk around with an “attitude” while you are in the presence of your parents. This looks worse on you than anything “embarrassing” they may say or do. We love welcoming parents. You will not be the only one with parents. Remember, many of you would not be stepping foot on campus if it were not for them. Be gracious.
10.) Smile and be friendly! (Oh, did I already say that?)
University employees all around the nation look forward to incoming freshman coming on campus. New Student Orientation is an exciting time for everyone. Enjoy the experience. Soak in the view. You have made it!!