Welcoming and ready

Opening weekend allows freshmen to get to know campus before classes start

As clouds rolled in over the UW-Eau Claire campus on Thursday about 1,400 freshmen carried futons and boxes full of clothes into their dorms with the help of parents and Hall Raisers.

In past years, move in for students has been described as chaotic and hot. This year weather seemed to corporate, although it was overcast all day and sprinkled a little, temperatures were more mild, making move in more comfortable.

Associate director of housing and residence life Deb Newman said this year was less chaotic and there was no major crisis.

“The weather can make a huge difference. Last year it was in the 90s and it was very uncomfortably warm and we were all exhausted by the end of the day,” Newman said. “ This year we had much more cooperative weather and I think that made the biggest difference.”

Students checked in with resident assistants in front of their buildings. From there, Hall raisers assisted in moving students into their rooms.  Students and RA’s said Hall Raisers are a huge help with bringing things into the room, it makes the move in process easier and goes more quickly.

This was sophomore elementary education Marlee Brunow’s first year as a hall raiser. She said overall move in was not that bad. Each hall raiser had a two-hour shift, that way nobody was overworked.

“Everyone was helping out and we really used teamwork. We (the hall raisers) would tackle one car at a time to move quickly,” Brunow said.

Part of a students first year in college is saying goodbye to parents, and moving on to the next chapter of their lives. Freshman education major Bailey Yuknis, said she is excited for the school year and being more independent. However, she, like everyone, has to adjust to the change.

“I’m excited to start college and be on my own, but it hasn’t set in yet,” Yuknis said.

The university works hard to plan out a schedule to keep students busy on campus before classes start. On Friday morning, freshmen attended phase two of orientation, allowing them to get more familiar with the campus.

The day started with a welcome to the class of 2018, held in Zorn Arena. Master of Ceremonies Jesse Martinez entertained the crowd while welcoming them to the university. Through out the welcome students were introduced to a variety of different organizations on campus, giving a preview for Blugold Organizational Bash, otherwise known as B.O.B.

During the event, Chancellor James C. Schmidt, greeted the class and spoke about the university and his first year at Eau Claire. The chancellor stressed throughout his speech that is does not matter where students may come from or what mascot they were in high school.

“We are all Blugolds today,” Schmidt said in his speech to the class of 2018.

Schmidt then came out at the end of orientation one last time. In front of the entire freshmen class, he did the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, which is when a person has ice and water dumped on their head. The challenge raises money for ALS and awareness. While doing the challenge Schmidt nominated the communication’s professor Nicole Schultz’s first year experience class, the Blugold Marching Band and the Eau Claire Football team.

Following the welcome, freshmen proceeded to attend small group meeting with their major and tour facilities on campus.

The next few days were full of different activities from mixers to tie-dye affairs and outdoor wor out classes. A variety of different events allowed for freshmen students to get out of their dorm room and meet people while making memories.

Whether a student is from Eau Claire or Chicago, they experience the same overwhelming feelings of moving in and saying goodbye to their parents, while trying to fit into a new place. The university and housing department work hard to ensure an easy move in and smooth transition into college.