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Did you participate in any first-year programs designed to help you transition to college?

Written by Margaret Hibma

Illustration by Harrison Shuldman '08

A question from the " Fuse Guide to Surviving (and Thriving!) Your First Year" answered by eight current IC students

Katrina Thoene ‘12: Summer orientation was a great experience, and it helped me figure out which classes I should be taking. I also met many of my classmates. Being on the school's volleyball team was also an enormous help in the transition, because I was able to make friends even before the school year began. Plus, my resident assistant planned a lot of floor meetings and activities, so I went to those and met many of my neighbors.

Molly McPike ‘12: I participated in many of the programs, and they were all very helpful and rewarding. I was part of Lead-In, which was great because it allowed me to move onto campus a little earlier and get to know people before classes started. I also took an Ithaca Seminar, which introduced me to reading and note-taking for other classes. These classes also provide access to other activities on campus such as speakers and even concerts at the music school.

Kaylee Underkofler ‘11: I registered for an Ithaca Seminar during my first semester. The seminars help new students make the transition into college life and get to know the campus and the city.

Riley Dunn ‘12: I took an Ithaca Seminar my first semester called Experiencing College Athletics. Being on a sports team was actually a huge part of my successful transition to Ithaca. I had a solid group of friends immediately. Sports are a great opportunity to meet people when you first arrive on campus -- especially a fall sport, because you usually have to come before classes start.

Karin Edsall ‘12: I took an Ithaca Seminar for public speaking. The class helped me get to know my academic adviser (who was my professor) and meet new people -- it was a great way to start college.

Katherine Sullivan ‘12: I got involved in the First-Year Cabaret, a musical written and directed by students. It was a great way to meet other freshmen and get involved. I see these friends all the time in the dining halls and around campus, and it is great to get to know people outside of your major or school!

I also live in BRT first-year student housing where there are all kinds of special activities geared to help everybody get to know one another and make friends.

Daniel Brown ‘11: I took part in Community Plunge and took an Ithaca Seminar. Community Plunge was probably the activity that made my transition to Ithaca most successful. I made some great friendships, got to move in early, and had a good time. I also learned a lot about the city of Ithaca that you don't get from the admissions office, like where to shop and  how to get to the gorges.

Samantha Stern ‘12:
I attended as many freshman programs as I could. Much is scheduled during the first weekend, so there were a lot of options. I was not part of any freshman programs but I attended most of the parties and welcoming ceremonies as I could.

What first-year programs are you most interested in? Which do you think will help you the most? Add a comment to let us know!



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