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New Student Orientation Helps Students Make the Transition to University Life

New Student OrientationThe transition between high school life and university life can be a complicated and difficult one, say the members of the New Student Orientation team. There are heightened expectations for school work, and for many, it's their first experience living away from home. To help students make this transition more smoothly, Trent started running New Student Orientations in the summer of 2003.

The summer program started with daylong sessions on July 6, which will run through to August 19. The sessions have been running Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, normally consisting of approximately 68 students, plus their parents. In the morning while students are registering for their courses and attending other orientation sessions, parents/guardians attend a separate information session. The program brings the students and parents back together for lunch and the afternoon segment of the program. Students learn about what awaits them the first few weeks at Trent, while parents learn about what to expect during this time of transition.

Students attending the program, who may be, at first, nervous, feel well informed by the end of the day, says Orientation staff member Rachael Nicholls. The New Student Orientation Program is run by six upper-year Trent students who each offer a unique perspective to incoming students on Trent university life.

The program offers new students opportunities to register for classes, sign up for e-mail, tour the campus and residential colleges, learn about financial aid opportunities, and meet other new students. The program allows students to bond as they are introduced to Trent.

New Student Orientation is a relatively new program, and this year has become a requirement for all new students coming to Trent from Ontario high schools. A very important element of the program for the staff is the feedback new students provide at the end of each session. This allows staff to assess the strengths of the program. The comments indicate that the experience is a helpful one, and helps prepare and relax new students for the upcoming school year. International Students and students coming from other provinces are able to attend similar drop-in sessions that are scheduled for Introductory Seminar Week (ISW), September 5-9.

To find out more about the drop-in sessions during ISW, e-mail or call 705-748-1011, ext. 5061. For further information, visit

Photo: Carol Weafer-Lloyd of Recruitment Services (Nursing), and Christina Fry of the New Student Orientation team help out a new student.

Posted August 2, 2005

















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