Orientation Week on campus is probably the closest thing this world will ever see of a utopia. Everyone is happy and polite, passionate and outgoing, peaceful and in awe. Sure, critics may call it a waste of time, but many who have gone through it will disagree loudly and proudly. Some of these people congregated downtown in Brantford on Labour Day to welcome incoming students for the upcoming year.
Huge crowds of first years arrived on September 6 at Laurier Brantford’s various residences, each moving in a seemingly endless supply of boxes. Then a week of pure entertainment ensued, consisting of movies, trips to water parks, nights out and of course, who could forget hours upon hours of cheering, finally culminating on September 11.
Not a single book was in sight. This was a week solely devoted to enjoyment and rightfully so, as many students espouse.
“It’s really meant to comfort you before you’re hit over the head with school work,” says student Jasmine Hatcher. “They just try to throw a ton of fun things at you so it’s not such a shock.”
From the time students step into their ninth grade classrooms, they’re told how terrifying university will inevitably be. In some measured way, sources suggest they may be right,
According to a study out of the University of Toronto: “It is expected that students will spend a considerable amount of time out of class on private and group study (reading, researching, preparing for assignments, presentations, tests and exams, etc.) and most will find that expectations at university are far higher than they were in high school.”
An instant transition would surely result in a nearly paralyzing culture shock. Orientation Week acts as that friendly buffer zone highlighting the best social aspects of post-secondary education.
The cheers this year may have been slightly different, the band switched up from last, but in the end the reason behind the week remains.
Maheen Faisal, a second year university student explains, “When you’re bogged down in readings,” says second-year student Maheen Faisal, “frosh week is a time you can look back on and remember as a good introduction to a place that requires a lot of hard work.”