Thousands of students will soon return to the University of Regina for the fall semester. Some will come from smaller communities around the province, while others will come from all corners of the globe. One thing they will have in common is a well-organized effort to make them feel at home.
Raeanne Skihar, coordinator of the Student Success Centre says New Student Orientation on September 6 is especially important for first-year undergraduate students.
"We have more than 200 current students to help new students around campus and answer questions they may have", says Skihar. "In total we're expecting 1400 new students to participate in our orientation programs in preparation for the fall semester."
A fun weekend planned for September 3-4 for students staying in residence will provide an opportunity for students to unload their gear, meet University of Regina President and Vice-Chancellor Vianne Timmons, and take part in activities such as carving watermelon football helmets and roasting marshmallows over a campfire.
"When they arrive on campus, students have the opportunity to get involved right away," says Skihar. "A lot of our students are from outside of Regina, so they're not only making the change to a new school, they're also moving away from home. We are here to help them make those adjustments."
One of those students is 18-year-old Wadena resident Raelyn Hoffart, who is moving into residence.
"Finding classes, and meeting new roommates and friends are my priorities for now," says the first year social work student. "I'm a little nervous, but really excited."
Between September 7 and 9 the University of Regina Students' Union (URSU) has a wide variety of activities designed to welcome students to campus. URSU Welcome Week Coordinator Ally Pilkey says there is everything from the popular Concert on the Academic Green, to a beach volleyball tournament, to an outdoor movie night for students to enjoy.
"It's a great week to come out and experience what we have to offer and meet new students. It's that time before exams to be excited and create an atmosphere that [new students] can feel comfortable in."
For more information about University of Regina orientation, visit http://www.ursu.ca/orientation/index2.php.