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Radford University Eases Students, Parents into College Life
RADFORD --Radford University begins preparing their students for success the moment they step on campus for new student orientation in June.
That’s when an army of RU faculty, staff, and student “New Student Orientation – Quest” assistants meet with hundreds of fresh-out-of-high-school students --and their parents-- to teach them everything there is to know about living and learning at Radford University.
“We are very proud of our program,” said Vice Provost for Enrollment Planning and Management Steven Nape, whose office oversees the orientation program at RU as part of a portfolio of related student recruitment and management programs. “This is an important part of Radford University’s ‘family experience.’ It is the quality and commitment of the individuals who help us present this program, from faculty and staff to students and administrators, that make it the success that it is.”
This year, the students and their parents will arrive on campus in groups of 300-400 over a two-week period beginning June 18. In total, over 1,600 students and their families are expected to participate. While in the orientation program, students will break up into smaller groups of 16-17 and meet with orientation assistants, faculty and administrators to learn all of the necessities involved in transitioning to life at RU. Everything from life on campus to class schedules is discussed.
Students work closely with faculty advisors to develop their first-semester academic schedules, they receive practical information about information technology usage, dining hall and residential life, clubs and organizations and other aspects of campus life during the sessions.
Families also have a chance to talk with President Kyle and Provost Scartelli, who present remarks during the program introduction and attend some of the other sessions.
“Quest gives the new students a chance to not only meet with current Radford University students, but to also get to know the professors and learn that we are here to help and guide them through the process,” said Tod Burke, a criminal justice professor and one of 24 orientation faculty advisors.
Providing a “student first” academic and life experience is a priority for the university.
“Radford University is known for its personal touch when it comes to faculty and administrators working with our students, and we take the same approach with our orientation,” said Mike Dunn, director of new student programs. Dunn, a nationally recognized student affairs professional, has provided leadership for the program for more than 20 years.
Throughout the orientation, which is currently in its 31st year, parents aren’t left simply tagging along with their college-bound student. They, too, have designated orientation guides and participate in a uniquely-designed program to ease them through the transition of becoming an RU parent. They are able to participate in information sessions ranging from their student’s major to campus safety and financial aid. They also have the opportunity to meet with other parents during arranged social events.
The university will hold a similar orientation program for transfer students in July.
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June 24, 2010