Welcome Weekend at Kent is a freshman’s foot-in-the-door to living the college life. The package comes complete with first overnight stays in your new “dorm-sweet-dorm”, plenty of free food, and even your first class! Don’t be intimidated by the long list of scheduled events. You don’t have to attend all of them, but here is a guide that may persuade you to attend most of them, especially the ones with free stuff! Keep reading for everything you need to know about Kent Orientation Weekend!
First, residence hall move-in is quite possibly the very first time you will meet your new roommate. Scratch that- the first time your whole family will meet your roommate. Remember, you are living with this stranger for the next nine months. While you’re unpacking your bags, make light conversation. If you don’t already know much about them, start with the basics and ask their major, what kind of music they like, or if they play any sports. Maybe you can make plans to meet up later, like at the ice cream social.
Warning: You will be required to fill out a contract given by your RA that discusses certain rules and terms you and your new roommate agree upon, such as visiting hours. In addition to your move in, your RA will call for a mandatory hall meeting on your floor. Use this meeting to introduce yourself to your neighbors, because it’s always better to know who you are sharing the bathroom with.
Most students skip by this event, thinking it will always be available to them. They are wrong, at least partially. Tech help is located in Tri Towers on the Koonce side of the rotunda. Going for tech help at one of the booths near residence halls provides instantly free Microsoft Office and helps with installing devices like printers and televisions. It also shows you how to plug into the college’s Wi-Fi. It’s better to get these technological issues out of the way early.
Do you enjoy putting yourself out there? This is an event for the social butterfly, or the kid with mad dance moves and hilarious banter. Karaoke and the Kent State Social are great events to spread your wings. You’re not in high school anymore, so it’s okay to live a little. Nobody is there to make fun of you, and the chances are neither you nor they will be recognizable once you dive into the crowds of students living on campus.
Getting to know your college and the people who run it is just as important as building a social life. First, you will have the dean’s welcome, where all students are split into groups –respectively of the college they are studying in (i.e. College of Communication and Information)- where they receive a colored towel that represents that college. Listen to the faculty, make small talk with the students around you, and scream really loudly when it’s time to cheer on your college because the next event is the convocation ceremony- where you will all gather and compete with other colleges as to who can cheer the loudest.
The convocation is a large ceremony hosted in the MACC Center where you will meet the university’s president. Take in the scene. This is where you realize, “Yes, I’m going to Kent State University.”
You’re probably wondering, “Wait a minute. Didn’t she say I’d have my first class? Already? But I JUST got here!” Relax. As long as you did your assigned summer reading for First Year Experience, you’ll be fine. Yes, you were supposed to read that book. And yes, you were supposed to do the written assignment that comes with it. Don’t start out your college career without doing the work for possibly the easiest class you will ever take here at Kent State. Your peers in this class are in the same college as you are and many of them might be the same major. This is an excellent place to build relationships and connect with people who think like you.
Now what about that free food? A handful of the colleges will offer free pizza, cookies and snow cones to the students who are in specific majors. But that does not restrict you from going. Again, this is a great opportunity to meet new people and make connections for future networking.
Looking for something to do? In addition to refreshments, there will be plenty of opportunities to see a movie. The movie is usually a recently released film with a substantial fan base. You can get together a group of friends, maybe just your roommate and a couple neighbors, and hit the movie theater. This will be an opportunity every Friday and Saturday night, called “Real Late Reels” hosted in the KIVA.
Where are all my sports fans at? This Is Kent State is your introduction to the sports life of Kent State University. In the MACC Center, you will meet the university’s top players and coaches. Going to Kent State games is part of being a true Kent State student. Be prepared to holler and howl at the upcoming football game!
My favorite event is Discover Downtown. Ride the trolley to downtown Kent where you can mozy in and out of Acorn Alley with cool shops like The Fashion School Store and Off the Wagon. There will also be an array of booths giving out free stuff from coupons to Domino’s Pizza to raffles for discounted yoga classes.
Tip: You’ll be getting many fliers and advertisements, so take whatever you can get and then organize it later that night.
Now, here’s probably the most important part of Welcome Weekend other than those late night frat parties that we all know freshman “don’t” go to. Finding your classes is key to a successful orientation. Hopefully the weather is nice enough to walk around. If you’re nervous about getting lost, have no fear because the KSUMobile app has both a campus map and a GPS built in! More than likely, you’ll see a lot of students with their eyes glued to their phone; they are using the GPS. My advice is to time your walk between classes so you know what time is appropriate to leave your dorm in the morning.
Last, but certainly not least, BLAST OFF! Is one of Kent’s best traditions. Student organizations and community groups gather around the Student Center to welcome you to campus with tons of free candy and fliers. This is the perfect place to write your email down on club contact lists and join some fun, interesting, relative-to-your-major groups. There are dance groups, television fandoms, political groups, and intramural sports! This is the true kickoff to a great school year.
Oh, and I forgot to mention one thing. There’s this little thing called FLASHperks, a reward program in which you accumulate hundreds of thousands of points just for attending special events and activities. As these points build up, you stand a chance to win a whole array of prizes from a free hooded sweatshirt to free tuition! There will be plenty of opportunities to gain these points throughout Welcome Weekend. All you need is your flashcard student ID.
Welcome Weekend is a time to celebrate being a college student. It is a time to show your spirit and newfound love for your new home, Kent State University. Congrats, black squirrels, and enjoy your stay here at the Kent State University. I definitely am!
This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own!
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