Fall 2011 Opening Day

Isaak Kifle

Welcome Wagon students shown here helping new students move into their dorm rooms to start the academic year.

It’s finally that time of the year again, when the university bursts with energy and welcomes new members into the community. Thursday, August 25, was freshman move-in day! From the early

morning until late in the afternoon, cars flooded the campus, bringing with them new students and their families.

As it has been for the past several years, this year’s opening day saw the most incoming students in the history of the university. Over 1200 freshman entered UNH as the class of 2015, and adding transfer students to that puts the total number of incoming students near 1500! While a few of them moved in earlier for CAMEP or the DREAM orientation, most came in on the that day between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. moving into Bethel, Bixler, Botwinik, New Hall and “Camp DuRu” (Campbell, Dunham Hall, and the Ruden Street apartments), while commuters checked into the Bartels Student Activity Center.

To assist in making the move-in process as quick and easy as possible, the Office of Student Activities has once again coordinated the Welcome Wagon. Welcome Wagon is a group of upperclassmen who volunteer to move on campus early in order to help the incoming freshmen move their belongings into their room. This year, over 200 students volunteered to be a part of the effort. Wearing bright red shirts, the volunteers were stationed at every freshman residence hall, led by Lisa Saverese, the assistant director of student activities, as well as team captains located at each building.

In addition, faculty, staff, resident assistants, academic peer mentors, and orientation leaders helped get the students checked in and kept the process organized for everyone. A huge thank you to everyone that helped make the freshmen feel as welcome as possible, even if it meant working in the rain!

Opening day did not end there however. Following move-in, incoming students had a chance to attend the resource fair in the Beckerman recreation center to see what services and resources are available to them in and around campus. After, parents and families had the chance to say goodbye, the class of 2015 took their class picture, which they’ll have the chance to reflect on as they reach graduation. Following that, they had dinner with their orientation leaders and groups, as well as meetings with their RA. New students ended their first day with an ice cream social in the quad.

Due to the impending hurricane, several of welcome week’s events were canceled and the school was closed on Saturday at 10:00 p.m., though the Office of Student Activities announced plans to reschedule them. As soon as it was safe, welcome week and classes kicked off, and freshmen began to get the full college experience.

Lastly, to all of the freshmen class of 2015 and the new transfer students, welcome to the University of New Haven!