Even before students began to arrive in Geneva for Orientation 2011, Twitter and Facebook were abuzz with excited well-wishes from alums and friends, and pictures of packed cars. Now, as the 690 students in the Classes of 2015 step foot onto the Quad to collect their Orientation materials, meet with faculty and staff and shake hands with President Mark D. Gearan on the steps of Coxe Hall, the enthusiasm for the coming weekend – and year – is palpable.
All morning, students have been winding their way through tents set up on the Quad, meeting with the Colleges’ Deans, members of Admissions and Alumni House, and picking up William Smith totes and Hobart pennants.
“I am looking forward to everything,” laughs Molly McElgunn ’15 of Cohasset, Mass., who is joined today by her parents and sisters. “I’m just so excited to be in college – to be here!”
The Classes of 2015 are one of the most diverse yet, with students coming from more than 30 states and as far away as China, Italy, Ghana and Norway. Each student arriving on campus today has quickly become a part of the Colleges’ long tradition, signing the matriculation book and marking their official entrance to Hobart or William Smith.
Dollian Garo ’15, who arrived this morning from his home in Bronx, N.Y., is happy to be back at HWS; this summer, Garo spent five weeks on campus as part of the Academic Opportunity Program. Although he is excited for classes, Garo is most looking forward to taking advantage of Seneca Lake and the pool in Bristol Gymnasium. “I really want to become a better swimmer,” he explains. “I’m hoping to learn a few more skills.”
After receiving all of their Orientation materials and speaking with the Deans of the Colleges, students are heading to their respective Residence Halls, where Orientation Mentors are on hand to help families locate rooms, unload cars and carry boxes, bags, lamps and televisions.
“I was looking for something completely different,” says Blair Dector ’15 as she moved into her room in Durfee Hall. Dector, who is more than a few miles from her home in Boca Raton, Fla., sees Central New York as a wonderful place to grow. “I wanted to get out of my comfort zone.”
Orientation Coordinators Caroline Dosky ’12 and Brian Horn ’12 are hard at work, welcoming their new classmates and gearing up for a weekend jam-packed with activities meant to ignite school spirit, introduce campus, and cement new friendships. Late Friday afternoon, students and their families will be welcomed by President Gearan in an official address on Stern Lawn.