August 22, 2016
Michelle Adams O'Regan
Communications and Marketing
Forty-seven first-year students arrived on campus today to participate in the Multicultural Center's "Transitions" pre-Orientation Program. Participants will enjoy a few extra days getting acclimated to campus before the rest of the class arrives and New Student Orientation begins later this week. With 34 upperclassmen serving as mentors, the Transitions Program helps strengthen the academic, social and cultural experiences of first-year students.
Participants will spend three days connecting with student leaders, becoming familiar with campus resources and services and learning strategies to successfully transition from high school to college. Although the program is particularly relevant for students from traditionally underrepresented groups including first-generation, multicultural and commuting students, participants from all backgrounds will be part of the program.
"My experience on campus has been amazing because of how nice and supportive everyone is here," says Michigan resident William Owen, a sophomore computer science major who is serving as a Transitions mentor this year. "I rarely get to go home, but I have never felt homesick because of the closeness of the Saint Anselm College community. Joining the Transitions mentor staff was an easy choice. I want to make sure that everyone feels welcome and comfortable on campus."
James Bloor, a sophomore mathematics major from Georgia was a program participant last year. "I would not have been as comfortable on campus, or known as many people without Transitions," he says. Bloor will also serve as a mentor in the program this year, and plans to share the same hospitality that he received. "I want to make sure I can help as many incoming freshmen as possible."
In addition to ice breakers and off-campus social activities, participants will engage in "speed networking" with college administrators, a workshop with the Academic Resource Center, a session with faculty from the student's academic major and breakfast with Saint Anselm Abbey Prior, Father Mathias Durette, O.S.B. On Tuesday afternoon, the group will break into six smaller units and head into the Manchester community, volunteering at local service sites in partnership with the Meelia Center for Community Engagement.
Football coach, Joe Adam, encouraged his student-athletes to participate in the program, and five first-year students - including one California resident - will leave the turf for a few days to join Transitions. In addition, a new collaboration between the Office of Admission and Multicultural Center, the Multicultural Visitation Program, launched last spring and yielded an additional eight program participants in this fall's cohort.
The Class of 2020 and transfer students arrive Thursday morning for Move In Day, followed by the three-day New Student Orientation Program for all first-year students.
Story and photo by Cory True '09