And just like that, summer is drawing to a close and move-in is right around the corner! Residence Life and all of SJU has been getting ready to officially welcome the Class of 2023 to campus. Campus is in bloom, residence halls are prepared, and RAs are back on campus getting ready for their new students to arrive. While new students are finishing up their packing list, here are a few things to keep in mind to help make move-in day one of your best college memories!
Move-in can come with a lot of emotions!
Though you’ve been preparing all summer to move your stuff into your new residence hall, you might not have been preparing yourself emotionally for this big day. Move in can come with a ton of different and sometimes conflicting emotions – you’ll likely be excited, nervous, apprehensive and relieved to get here all at once. Additionally, your family and new roommate will also be managing their own complex emotions as well. Give each other a break and assume good intention as you get to work setting up your room. And be okay with tears; we see lots of them from students and families during this overwhelming day!
Expect traffic and some wait times, but a quick unloading process.
Keep in mind that you’ll be moving in with literally hundreds of other students. That can mean a lot of traffic and congestion as you wait to pick up your key and move in. While you may be waiting in your car for a bit, our staff will greet you and bring you your key and ID card while you wait. Once you get into the designated unloading area, volunteers will greet you and assist you with quickly unloading your car and moving your items up to your room. This part of the process takes just a few minutes while someone in your group stays with your vehicle. Once you’re unloaded, the driver will move your vehicle out of the unloading area to a parking lot across campus.
Small rooms don’t have a lot of storage; don’t bring so much stuff!
Remember that you’ll be sharing a relatively small room with another person! With limited storage in your room, it’s difficult to find a place for tons of extra food and all your winter clothes. Most of our students are able to get home at least once or twice over the course of the year; only bring what you need until the next time you can get home.
Get your work-out in!
While we have lots of student volunteers assisting our families with move-in, it’s really helpful when this is a team effort. Lines for the elevators can get long. If you and your move-in team can climb stairs, consider taking a few lighter items up instead of waiting for another cart. Little siblings can even carry light bedding! Additionally, while we have move-in carts in use, if you have a hand truck or wagon available, it might be a helpful addition to make quick work of the unloading process.
You finally get to meet your roommate…and don’t forget your RA!
Though you’ve hopefully been able to communicate with your roommate over the summer already, this might be the first time you get to meet in person. And you might have an audience with family members in the room! It’s always a little awkward meeting roommates for the first time; just go with it. If you’re arriving before your roommate, make sure you save them some space in the room for all of their items. And don’t forget to get to know your RA! They’ll likely find you to say hello; start asking them for anything you need. Your RA can be a fantastic resource for you throughout the entire year – get to know them!
Enjoy some last time with parents and families.
Remember that your parents and families have all the feels during move-in day too! Once you get your room set up, try to spend a little time with them. Consider walking around to explore campus together or grabbing lunch or dinner together before you say your goodbyes.
The fun doesn’t stop after you move in!
Once you’re finally unpacked and your entourage leaves campus, there are still a ton of things going on around campus. Get out of your room and participate! There will be campus activities for new students on Friday and Saturday night, and all during “Welcome Week”. Get outside and meet your new class before classes get too intense!
Orientation continues on Sunday
Orientation for new first-year students continues on Sunday. You and your class will participate in a series of events with your Orientation groups throughout the day on Sunday. These events are designed specifically to help you get used to campus and get ready for your first few weeks as an SJU Hawk. Plan to attend with your roommate, your floor mates, and the rest of your class!
Don’t forget to sleep and get yourself organized – you start your SJU academic career on Monday!
After all the excitement of move-in and the fun throughout the weekend, you do have to get yourself ready for class! Set your alarm for classes on Monday morning; make sure you’re well rested, eat breakfast, and be ready to make a good impression on your new faculty. A good first day can lead to a great semester ahead!
-Jessica Moran-Buckridge, Director of Residence Life