During these past few weeks, the campus has been brimming with nearly 250 parents and excited new students at the first three summer orientation sessions. Whether it was team-building, ice breaker exercises, meeting with academic advisors, or hearing from student leaders, the new students seemed to be having fun in a relaxed environment.
For students, the benefit to these sessions is a smoother transition to college. They have more information on the environment, what their daily lives will be like, who their classmates are, plus the opportunity to make friends in the small orientation groups. From the College’s standpoint, we gather first-hand information on student interests and have the opportunity to deepen student attachment to the College.
This quotation by Mullendore and Banahan (2005) expresses it well: “Orientation can be the defining moment in the transition to college for the student, a time in which basic habits are formed that influence students’ academic success and personal growth, and marks the beginning of a new educational experience.”
The parents I spoke with remarked about the beauty of our campus and how it felt
like a tight-knit community from the first time they stepped on our grounds. They all said that they were certain a place like Nichols, with small classes, a faculty focus on teaching, and the rolling hills around campus, was the perfect place for their son or daughter. I agree!