Orientation Week to Welcome 4,500 New U of G Students

August 30, 2012 - News Release

What does it means to be a student at the University of Guelph? A fresh cohort of more than 4,000 will discover this and more during Orientation Week, Sept. 1 to 8.

The theme is “Explorientation,” and hundreds of events are planned to introduce the opportunities available to new students on campus and in the community, including the president’s welcome, a series of special lectures and a world-record event.

“Explorientation is about exploring one’s potential and all of the opportunities at U of G,” said Dave Mossman, co-ordinator of orientation programs.

Barry Townshend, manager of the Centre for New Students, said everyone is excited about the week to come. “This is a time when University departments and student groups collaborate to create all kinds of meaningful learning experiences for new students. The program offers something for everyone, from large high-energy events to more intimate discussion groups. There will be social activities as well as events focusing on academic success and introducing students to programs and services offered by the University and by student groups.”

Orientation Week begins Sept. 1 with residence move-in day. Students will move into U of G residences with help from members of the University community.

Gordon Street will be closed between Stone Road and College Avenue from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. to accommodate the move-in. Campus and city police, along with volunteers, will assist with directing traffic.

At 11 a.m., president Alastair Summerlee will offer families an official welcome to the University community. He will be joined in Rozanski Hall by associate vice-president (student affairs) Brenda Whiteside and representatives from the Central Student Association and the Centre for New Students. Each will speak to the uniqueness of the first-year experience and provide helpful information to best navigate through the year ahead.

The range of programming being offered is broad. Sunday, for example, includes a campus tour for mature and transfer students following a 9 a.m. meet-and-greet breakfast with members of the Guelph Mature Student Association.

Jessi Cruickshank from MTV Canada will speak at 10:15 p.m. Monday about how getting involved in school affected her life and why students should strive to find a similar balance. Among other activities, Cruickshank started a special-needs drama program at a local high school, joined the student council and played intramural sports.

On Tuesday, first-year students enrolled in hospitality and tourism management can hang out with their professors starting at 2:30 p.m. at PJ’s Restaurant in the Atrium in Macdonald Stewart Hall, then head over to the Arboretum for an afternoon of fun and games.

At 5 p.m., the Student Nutrition Awareness Program co-ordinators and ombudsperson will offer students an opportunity to consult U of G hospitality staff members about healthy eating on campus at a free barbecue.

Wednesday’s highlight will be the president’s welcome and luncheon for first-year students. An official induction ceremony will be held in the new Gryphon Field House at noon to help inspire students as they embark on their undergraduate experiences in the new academic year. Summerlee and other senior university administrators will share insights into achieving academic success.

Thursday evening will be filled with intrigue for off-campus U of G students, with a dinner and magic show starting at 6 p.m. in the Science Complex atrium. Tickets will be sold at the door for $10.

At the end of the week, students will be invited to participate in the Sept. 8 World Record Challenge — Emergency Food Packing Event at 1 p.m. on Johnston Green. Last year, students and community members set a world record by packaging 159,840 emergency relief meals in one hour. This year, organizers have set the ambitious goal of 200,000 meals or more.

“This week is offered by the campus and community to say: ‘Welcome! We’re so glad you’re now a part of our family, and we want to help you achieve your dreams,’” Townshend said. “Of course, none of it would be possible without the assistance of more than 700 returning students who act as Orientation Week volunteers to answer questions, help run events and make sure everything goes smoothly.”

Classes begin Sept. 6.

For more information and a complete list of Orientation Week events, visit http://www.startonline.ca/oweek2012/home/welcome.

The Centre for New Students will also be tweeting throughout the week at uog_oweek.

Barry Townshend
Manager, Centre for New Students
519-824-4120, Ext. 52498

For media questions, contact Communications and Public Affairs: Lori Bona Hunt, 519-824-4120, Ext. 53338, or lhunt@uoguelph.ca, or Shiona Mackenzie, Ext. 56982, or shiona@uoguelph.ca.

University of Guelph
50 Stone Road East
Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1