Most of us think of orientation as a set of hours any institution we are integrating into has set aside to talk us to near informed boredom. The information is all, of course, very important but perhaps not in that moment. As a student, I’m generally a little more nervous and excited to meet new classmates, faculty, and staff than be lectured about my health. Despite my reservations about orientation I was quite pleased with how the day turned out!
The day started with lunch! At least as students we were able to focus for the remainder of the day on the content and not our stomachs. Lunch was a plesent affair with students from all the degree tracks eating under one roof. While we ate we were introduced the the Dean, Chairs of Departments, and Dean’s office Staff. Post lunch we were split into groups based on the colors on our name tags: in my case this was green group.
The next several hours green group proceed to four different rooms for various instruction. We met with current students, were informed on available resources for our health, introduced to the library and the archives, and updated on everything we needed to know about the IT department (the mechanical heart behind all our makings). Each was informative and thankfully their information would be made available again on the Thrive at Penn Canvas page students are added to upon accepting admission into Penn.
After the information sharing was done, it was time for social fun! The student groups were further split up into smaller groups for a campus wide scavenger hunt! Though my group, “Yes we Khan!”, did not win, the prize being 1TB hardrives each, the secondary goal of the excercise was certainly achieved. By the end of the scavenger hunt the majority of the group had spent an hour introducing themselves and enjoying the company of their new group while rapidly walking through campus in search of answers to our clues. With the scavenger hunt complete a BBQ in front of Meyerson Hall commenced. A genuinely lovely end of day event with plenty of food, deserts, and drinks! More introducing and long conversations ensued with the Dean meandering between student groups.
All in all it was a pleasantly social day meeting classmates and gathering basic information for my success as a student at Penn. Orientation is one event not to miss.