If you’re walking across the Buffalo State campus this week, expect to see a blur of bright orange. Colorful nylon backpacks containing an extensive orientation guide and schedule will be given to each of the approximately 1,500 first-year and 1,200 transfer students starting here this fall.
First-Year Week of Welcome starts Tuesday, August 23, and continues through Friday, August 26. All new students are required to participate.
Along with picking up their IDs and parking passes and finding their classrooms, first-year and transfer students get to meet the faculty, advisers, and student leaders. According to Robert Mead-Colegrove, director of orientation and new student programs, the personal connections ensure that more students will stay in school and graduate.
More than 425 parents and guests are also expected to attend orientation this year.
First-Year Convocation, the official ceremony welcoming students to Buffalo State, will be held from 9:00 to 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, August 24, in the Sports Arena. At the ceremony, President Aaron Podolefsky will address new students.
Throughout the week, students will participate in myriad fun and informative activities, from a mock first day of class to a theatrical presentation portraying light and serious aspects of campus life.
“We want to show students that college is a wonderful time to learn and grow,” Mead-Colegrove said.
Transfer Orientation, Friday, August 26, is coinciding with first-year orientation for the first time, ensuring that all students receive the necessary information right before the start of the school year instead of months before.
“We strongly believe in the right time for the right message,” Mead-Colegrove said. As a result of the new schedule, the Orientation Office needed to enhance its programming and increase its roster of orientation leaders. This year, 125 orientation leaders will assist first-year and transfer students with the transition to campus life.
Also new this year, all first-year and transfer students are participating in Alcohol/Sexual AssaultEdu for College, a web-based course about alcohol and its effects. The sexual assault module addresses many of the assumptions associated with sexual assault, rape, stalking, and harassment.
To culminate the week, new students will get the chance to get to know Buffalo and the surrounding community firsthand by participating in Saturday of Service. On August 27, approximately 300 to 400 students will work with multiple community organizations on projects ranging from beautification of neighborhood gardens to house remodeling.
By the end of orientation week, new students will be ready to start the academic year, know what they can expect at Buffalo State, and know what Buffalo State will expect of them.