The kits are being packed, the residence beds are being made, and all across campus, everyone’s preparing to show their stripes.
That’s right: they’re almost here.
Dalhousie’s first-year students, that is. Orientation week begins this Sunday, kicking off a series of activities to welcome the newest members of the Dal community.
“My big thing this year is to create an environment for sustained engagement,” explains Jamie Arron, Dalhousie Student Union vice-president student life, who is responsible for organizing the DSU’s activities during orientation week.
“It’s not just about providing four days of fun, but something that’s informative and pushes students to get involved.”
The schedule this year contains some old favourites, such as the opening field party on Sunday. There are also events for parents and family and, as in years past, Dal staffers sporting ‘Ask Me’ buttons will be all across campus looking to help new arrivals find their way.
But there are some new events in orientation this year too. One is hfXplore, which will take first-year students on a tour of one of 20 organizations or locations in the community, giving them a hands-on look at some of the off-campus opportunities that existing throughout HRM.
Another shift will be with Shinerama, taking on the moniker of ‘Shine the City’ and encouraging students to take on community projects when they’re out fundraising for cystic fibrosis research. Yet another highlight: a conversation with Michael Lang, the concert promoter who most famously organized the 1969 Woodstock festival.
International students not only get to take part in orientation week activities: they have their own set of events and sessions that start Friday, giving them a chance to get to know each other and Dalhousie before the craziness of arrival day begins.
'Welcome to the family'
Finally, the yearly induction ceremony—the formal ‘welcome to the family’ celebration in the Dalhousie Arts Centre—will have a new touch this year: it concludes with an ice cream social hosted by Dal alumni, with senior administration and volunteers serving up tiger tail ice cream.
While orientation week proper only lasts for four days, with classes starting for most new students on Thursday September 8, it leads straight into Dal Fest, the DSU’s yearly ‘welcome back’ celebration. This year, Dal Fest is being expanded to three full nights of music, headlined by Bedouin Soundclash and Hollerado who will perform in the Studley quad on Saturday evening.
For more information, including a full listing of all DSU and Dal events, visit Dal's orientation website. First-year students looking to register for DSU orientation events can learn more at http://showyourstripes.ca
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