A new student can expect their first week at Western to be jammed with events, ice breakers in residence halls, bundles of brochures and endless amounts of new information thrown at them each day.
Nearly 4,000 first-year students arrived to campus this month. Whether they are transferring from another college, or fresh out of high school, it’s not uncommon for students to feel uneasy during their first weeks.
Students may search for ways to make a smooth transition into life at Western, and a common piece of advice from any student is to get involved.
The Associated Students is home to over 200 clubs, which include any topic or hobby students may be interested in, AS Vice President for Student Life Emma Palumbo said.
Palumbo said there are also committees for students who want a voice in the decisions that directly impact the student body.
“Find ways to get involved because you’ll meet a lot of folks that have similar interests to you or have similar passions, and that’s a really great way to feel connected to campus and feel at home here,” Palumbo said.
Every student is a part of the AS through tuition fees, making all of their services available to students, Palumbo said.
“For that reason, we want as much input as possible and we want to know what people care about,” Palumbo said.
Western is host to many resources for new students. Academic advising, which students first experience at orientation, is available to students year round.
“Part of our conversations with students is really helping them understand picking courses that are going to get them moving forward, in terms of declaring their major and moving towards graduation,” Assistant Director of Advising Services Meagan Bryson said.
From orientation, academic advisors encourage students to try to build a balanced schedule and ask for help if they need to know what that looks like.
Duncombe and Palumbo said it is important to make a connection with professors when possible. In Palumbo’s case, this connection helped her decide her major.
“I’ve found that professors at Western are legitimately interested in helping their students succeed, and I don’t think that’s a guarantee to all campuses,” Duncombe said.
Although the beginning of the year can be overwhelming, campus resources such as AS and academic advising are available year round in the hopes of helping students make their college experience a little less stressful.