This time last year, on the eve of move-in day, I was sitting in a hotel room with my nervous parents in Sayre, Pennsylvania (why you should make reservations now.) I poured over my Orientation Guide and trying to make a schedule of everything I wanted to do. One year later, as a sophomore and Orientation Leader, I am about to help the same nervous freshmen build their lives at Cornell and Mews Hall…. in about six hours. I spent tonight in my room in Hans Bethe House trying to make a schedule of everything I have to do, complete with consecutive 7 a.m. to midnight days. Am I really pulling all-nighters before classes even start?
It’s all an eerie sense of de ja vu, only this time I got a Lincoln Shirt and an insane amount of volunteer hours out of it. Just as I did last year, I pretended to not have read the New Student Reading Project because I’m way too cool for it. (Though, no lie, I read and immensely enjoyed Lincoln at Gettysburg.) I even got phone numbers but no last names, introduced myself to strangers while hanging up welcome letters on the doors of our freshmen, and almost lost my keys. You can go home again?
Training, a two-day affair, was actually quite enjoyable. It not easy to keep eight hundred Cornell students inside on a beautiful day, but the Orientation Steering Committee managed to make it lighthearted and fun. Making us laugh at the ungodly hour of 8:45 was some impressive work, too.
It’s been a crazy whirlwind of seeing old friends and making new ones, especially putting names to the faces of ILRies I see all the time in Catherwood. We’re trying to get creative with the icebreakers: “name, hometown, favorite notable labor conflict of the twentieth century…”
I’m pumped for move-in day tomorrow, even the waking up at 6:30 part. A smooth move-in is simply the right way to get started in a new place, so I’m hoping my big smile and classy Orientation nametag will help the new residents of Mews live up to the standard we set last year.
As per usual, I have a good feeling about all this.