Aug. 28, 2020
For Immediate Release
Waterloo – Wilfrid Laurier University will be welcoming the 2020 cohort of first-year undergraduate students with a series of virtual Orientation events, organized by Laurier’s Students’ Union, which will be held Aug. 31 to Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 to 11.
Orientation will be offered virtually this year and has been extended from one week to two, with events and programs designed to help students meet new people, make friends and learn more about university life.
“Orientation is filled with activities and events to help integrate incoming students into the Laurier community,” said Adam Lawrence, dean of students for the Brantford campus. “We know how different this year may feel for many students, but the Students’ Union, Student Affairs staff, faculty members and senior student volunteers have been working extremely hard to create an incredible program of events and social connections to help prepare students for academic and personal success in the coming year.”
Events include exercise classes, a multi-day interactive online game, how-to workshops on topics including tie dye and sign language, trivia, bingo, open-mic night, mentalist show, paint night, escape room and a concert. Guest speakers will present virtually on topics including:
Campus Fest will be held Sept. 10 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. At this virtual event, students can connect with Laurier departments, clubs and services and learn about the resources available and how to get involved.
Over the summer, incoming first-year students have been raising funds for Shinerama, in support of Cystic Fibrosis Canada, through virtual events and fundraising drives. Among those initiatives, You’re Muted for Shinerama encourages students and community members to make a donation every time they’re caught trying to speak during a virtual meeting while their microphone is muted.
On Shine Day, Sept. 12, there will be virtual fundraising events all day, as well as a bottle drive for both students and the community. The first-year student who raises the most will win a $500 Bookstore gift card.
“This summer, student leaders, the Students’ Union, staff and faculty have been preparing for our incoming first-year undergraduate students have the best possible start to their university careers,” said Kate McCrae Bristol, dean of students on the Waterloo campus. “Even though things will look and feel a bit different this year, we want students to have the chance to engage in and learn about our community and all of the opportunities available. These programs and events are designed to help students feel prepared for their first semester, knowing they’re supported both academically and personally.
“We want to welcome the next class of Golden Hawks – we’ve been waiting for you!”
Visit Laurier's Orientation website for a full list of activities.
Incoming international students will also receive a special welcome with a series of events just for them, including meet and greets, informational sessions on Laurier’s support services and presentations on Canadian culture. International Orientation events have been added to the main Orientation schedule so none of the events conflict with each other.
The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies and the Graduate Students’ Association have planned a series of online orientation sessions for master’s and doctoral students designed to help students transition to graduate studies, understand what is expected of them, and navigate the services and supports available to them.
In accordance with public health guidelines, Laurier’s Waterloo and Brantford campuses have reduced the number of students living in residence to allow each student to have their own room and to reduce the number of people on each floor. To accommodate physical distancing and extra cleaning, an extended move-in will take place from Sept. 5 to 9. Read more about the enhanced safety measures in Laurier’s residences.
Laurier will provide first-year undergraduate students with a value-added experience that nurtures development, including an adapted Residence Living-Learning Program, First-Year Residence Experience curriculum, and First-Year Leadership Program to foster development in online spaces.
Residence Learning Communities and Learning Clusters will continue to be offered, providing students with an immediate connection with peers who share the same interest, program or faculty. There are many leadership development opportunities available, including positions on councils that focus on social programming in residence, health and wellness, and the arts.
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Lori Chalmers Morrison, Director: Integrated Communications
External Relations, Wilfrid Laurier University