Joining a proud community
By Jessica Clarke
As September comes closer my muscles tend to get a little tense and my days a little longer; all in anticipation of the upcoming orientation program. As co-ordinator of the event, my worries seem to disappear as I remember how I felt as I entered the glass doors of the Field House on my first day of Memorial University orientation. The feelings that I call stress right now cannot compare to the fear and anxiety that I felt on that first day. It is the exact feelings that I experienced back in 2002 that I remember as I prepare the events of the 2005 orientation program. Having been fortunate enough to co-ordinate this event now for the second year in a row, I have been able to focus on adding new and exciting events to the schedule that have never been offered before.
This yearís orientation is all about kicking things off on the right foot, starting right here, right now at orientation. The program is designed to instil a sense of pride in students who have made the decision to come to Memorial as well as provide them with every bit of information they will need.
At orientation, students get the opportunity to find out about the campus essentials such as lockers, parking, campus ID cards, computer access and everything in between. Orientation also allows students to learn how to get the absolute best for their buck by utilizing all the services that are available to them. Academic help centres, the Counselling Centre and Student Health Services are among the numerous services available to students.
In addition to loading students with information about the campus, we recognize that the most important aspect of bringing all first-year students together is to allow them to make friends and connections at their new home, Memorial University. Memorial is a proud community eager to welcome all new students to take part in every aspect possible. We welcome new creativity and spirit to all of our leadership programs, athletics, clubs, societies and classes.
One of the new and exciting sessions that we have included in this yearís orientation is Wacky Olympics. This session is designed to allow students to meet as many new people as possible, while competing against each other in events such as the Human Pretzel, the Mummy Rap and Trivia Challenges to win a variety of prizes.
We are also hosting a Varsity Menís Soccer event that is free for all students to attend as well as their parents and families. This event will allow them to catch a sneak peak at the soccer roster before the season begins. We will be offering a complimentary barbeque for all spectators of the event.
For the night event we have added a twist to our annual Breezeway Dance. This year, students can participate in a games night. This event is free for all first-year students and there are many prizes to be won. It will definitely be a ton of fun!
Having been a first-year student only three years ago, I feel that getting involved in university life is the best way to enjoy your time at Memorial. Orientation is a studentís first step to making the most out of their Memorial experience. After orientation the journey continues with the endless opportunities that this campus has available.
That scary Monday morning when I entered the doors of the Field House to attend orientation seems so long ago. I choose to stay involved, and since have had the opportunity to gain invaluable experience. First as a participant, then as a volunteer, and now as a co-ordinator, the benefits to orientation are endless and it all starts here, Right Here, Right Now.
Endless thanks to the orientation team and the staff of Answers for all their help.
Jessica Clarke is the co-ordinator of Orientation 2005.