You’re away from home on your own for the first time. You don’t know anyone around you, and you have a lot of exploring to do.
You must be a freshman.
There were plenty of those on Anderson University’s campus Thursday morning as new students began to move into residence halls. While some involved in extracurricular activities arrived days earlier, Thursday was move-in day for new students. Returning students move in today and classes start Tuesday.
Sarah Cleaver, of Lexington, Ky., said she felt welcomed by the upperclassmen, staff, and faculty standing ready to help the new students and their families unload cars and carry stuff in.
“I’m excited. Everyone’s been really helpful,” she said. “(Move in) went so fast. There were like six people in and out in five seconds.”
[Photo: Senior Charlie Holcomb was one of many volunteers helping to move new students into their dorm rooms at Anderson University on Thursday. Credit: Don Knight/The Herald Bulletin]
According to Director of Communications Chris Williams, there are 505 freshmen, a slightly larger incoming class than last year, and 50 new transfers at AU this year.
There’s a variety of orientation activities going on over the weekend, including events like the Meijer Extravangaza and a service project Saturday. The theme for the year is “Beyond Me,” based on Ephesians 3:20-21, and Williams said the school always kicks off the year in a meaningful way.
“(Helping new students move in is) our annual tradition as we welcome these families,” he said.
Owen Handy, the Ravens’ new head basketball coach, said he’s never participated in a move-in like this before. One of best things, he said, was seeing a dad thinking he was going to have to carry a fridge up several stairs just to learn the AU community was there to help and do it for him.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” he said. “There’s a lot of energy with the students moving them in and the students moving in.”
Cleaver is the baby of her family so she said it’s been a little hard for her mom, but that she’s excited about being on her own.
She’s been away for a week at a time for Christian conventions, but never for an extended period of time like she’ll be for school. She said she likes the feel of campus and is looking forward to the Meijer Extravangaza this weekend.
Students like Cleaver are excited to meet new people and get acquainted with roommates.
Katie Freel, of Greenwood, Ind., said she’s also a bit nervous about starting college. She’s never been away from home like this.
Her mom, Sarah, said it’s hard for her to see Katie leave home, but that she’s excited for the start of her college experience.
There was a lot of last-minute shopping and packing involved, she said.
“They (AU volunteers) made it really easy,” Katie said. “We got a lot of help.”
Volunteer Houston Snedden, a sophomore, said he had moved in before his fellow classmates his freshman year, but that helping the new students this year has been a nice opportunity.
“It shows we have a really great community here,” he said. “It shows we’re willing to help.”
— Dani Palmer is a reporter for The Herald Bulletin. Story reposted with permission.
Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,600 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music, nursing, and theology.