Moving In & Welcome Weekend

Hey all,

Sorry I didn’t upload for… WOW, has it really been over a month?!  My bad…

This last month I’ve been CRAZY busy.  I actually got a freelance web design job and was doing that along with working two jobs and trying to pack for school.

Here are the biggest university-related things that have happened…

Packing was a biggie.  Move-in day was September 2nd for Transfer students.  I planned on having my dad drive his pick-up so we could fit everything in one vehicle, which we did.  Now, my dad is pretty up there (He’s 74!) but I thought just having the two of us would be fine since there would be a move-in crew helping.  Oh, except they forgot to mention that there would not be a move-in crew when it was my turn since apparently there were only 2 transfers moving in to my building.  And by the way, my building doesn’t have an elevator.  Awesome.  So needless to say (but I’ll say it anyway), I was completely sore and worn out for the rest of the weekend.

On the upside, despite the tiny-ness of my room since it’s a single, I fit everything in it and even got to return some shelving I bought since my room came with bookshelves!  I did have to buy a few more items that weekend though such as hand soap, toilet paper, dish soap, and paper towels.  It seems that most of the dorm bathrooms do not have soap dispensers or paper towels, and the toilet paper is probably the cheapest kind the school could possibly get.

So, once I was all moved in, it was time to go home, grab my car, and drive back to campus.  It was only then that I realized resident parking kind of sucks at my university.  First, you pay $500 for this “luxury” and then discover, as in my case, that the parking lot is seven blocks away.  And when I parked my car in my designated spot on Sunday, the shuttles weren’t running yet.  And yes, there are shuttles going from the main campus to the parking lots, but it only goes to mine once every half hour.  My friend’s roommate, for instance, went grocery shopping, parked in her lot, and of course had just missed the shuttle, which meant waiting at least 20 minutes for the next one.  And she had ice cream!  Poor, ice cream.  It turns out that I didn’t have enough financial aid left over to cover the parking fee, so I turned in my decal the following thursday just before heading home for the weekend (I don’t have class on Fridays).  To be honest, I don’t think I would’ve used it much, but it would’ve made getting home easier.

That whole first weekend I was on campus though, was a kind of welcoming weekend.  It’s important to know for this topic that the freshmen moved in on Thursday and transfer students moved in on Friday.  That’s it.  We were the only ones on campus until Sunday.  There were only two other people on my dorm floor, too – a freshman and my RA.  So, I didn’t actually know anyone.  This meant a lot of meals sitting alone, but that was certainly not the worst part.  The worst part of the weekend and the beginning of the semester in general was that I’m a transfer student.

During that first weekend, there were many events like workshops and trivia and karaoke and a talent show, and I was excited about all of them!  But the only workshop that wasn’t about laundry or managing money was closed due to the person being sick.  At trivia, I won $20 for answering a riddle (and I hadn’t even heard this riddle before, so I was very proud of myself!), so that was a fun event.  But the talent show was horrid.  They made it all about freshmen pride and completely ignored transfers.  And the freshmen already had like cliques and stuff from their week-long orientation over the summer, so of course the winners were freshmen and then both second and third place went to orientation leaders.  poo.  Karaoke was fun though.  And I’m pretty sure I was the only one who had actually gone to karaoke before (lol).  So, I hope they do that again 🙂

The first week went smoothly enough, with the only downfalls being a lack of money and the New Student Convocation.  This official ceremony was meant for ALL new students, but unfortunately ended up being focused on freshmen.  I think transfers were only mentioned a total of 3 times in an hour-long ceremony, and even then, it was pretty much as an after-thought.  There was nothing specific that pertains to transfers.  OH, and then they were like, you get a free t-shirt!  And I was happy cause I want to show my school pride, but then I found out that they were 2015 shirts.  >.<

Now, let me just point out that most students do not actually complete their degrees in 4 years.  It’s just a fact nowadays.  So the administration is making this huge deal about class pride, and the year of graduation isn’t even going to apply to them.  Why not instead just give them shirts that say “Freshmen, ’11” or something??  That would make more sense…

One last thing that irked me was that the freshmen got mentors.  Transfer students didn’t.  They expect me to know what all of the other upperclassmen already know, but each school is different.  I know the basics, but I could definitely use a more experienced transfer student as a guide.  I’m considering advocating for a transfer student support group or mentoring program, because we are really being left out in the cold.  And that’s with me being a resident!  I’ve spoken to commuting transfers, and they’re even more clueless.  I’m lucky in that I will ask questions, but I think a lot of students that are alone in a completely new environment may not have the courage to speak up and demand information.

Okay, I’ll probably post another update in the next day or two, I just don’t want to post a longer-than-normal entry.  🙂

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