By Silas Allen
STILLWATER, Okla. —
Cars lined campus streets and parking lots at Oklahoma State University on Monday as freshmen and their families unloaded boxes, bags and furniture.
OSU opened its doors to freshmen Monday. Freshman move-in marks the beginning of Welcome Week, a weeklong orientation event for freshmen and other new students.
Lee Bird, OSU’s vice president for student affairs, said the university will offer some 150 programs this week to help students become better acquainted with the campus, faculty and college life.
Those programs are arranged around the so-called six pillars of student success, a list of character traits OSU officials hope to emphasize. Those characteristics are excellence, leadership, service, finding one’s purpose, broadening one’s horizons and wellness.
For example, Bird said, the university is offering a wellness program called “Take a Trip Down the Strip,” during which leaders talk with students about alcohol safety. Other programs include women’s self-defense, personal finance and study skills.
Welcome Week ends Friday, capped by the President’s Convocation at 4 p.m. During the convocation, students will hear from President Burns Hargis and Provost Robert Sternberg as well as several student speeches.
Monday morning, Bird said freshman move-in seemed to be going smoothly. Bird said she had been around campus for most of the morning, helping new students unload boxes and furniture. Hundreds of volunteers make the process easier, she said. Those volunteers include faculty, staff and students as well as several church groups and other community members.
“Things are going great,” she said. “I know I’ll be sore tomorrow, but that’s great.”
OSU’s maintenance crews received several calls for stuck elevators in dormitories around campus during the day. OSU spokesman Gary Shutt said all but one of those calls were false alarms.
“With boxes in their arms, many are accidentally hitting the call button, or it is being hit by mistake,” Shutt said. “We have had one stuck elevator the entire day. All other calls have been false alarms.”
Chris Baldwin, a new student at OSU, moved into Kerr-Drummond Hall Monday morning. Baldwin, a sophomore, spent a year at Tulsa Community College last year, but he said he knew he’d end up at OSU eventually.
“There’s never been any other choice,” he said.
Baldwin’s mother, Carole Baldwin, was among the family members helping move her son into his dorm. She said she was pleased with how smoothly the process was going.
“I have to say, the move-in process was amazing,” she said. “I mean, we figured we’d be standing in line and couldn’t find parking spots.”
Baldwin said he was looking forward to the experience he expected at OSU. Although he already has a year of college under his belt, he said going to a four-year university is different from going to a community college. The biggest change, he said, is simply being on his own and making his own decisions. He expected that to be a major part of his overall experience at OSU.
Freshman Jason Simon moved into Village F Tuesday morning with help from his family. Simon, an industrial engineering major, said he’s looking forward to being finished with the move-in process and starting classes.
Simon’s transition has been eased somewhat by the fact that his brother is also an OSU student, he said. His brother helped him with packing, telling him what he would need and what to leave behind.
“I’m just kind of anxious and just ready to be here, ready for it all to be done,” he said. “All the packing all the getting ready and the paperwork.”
NewsPress reporter Chase Rheam contributed to this report.