Incoming freshmen get the Washburn experience during New Student Orientation

Jack Van Dam is a Summer Orientation Counselor. His job is to help give students a picture of what life will be like at Washburn.

Derek Richardson

Washburn’s first New Student Orientation for the 2015-16 school year was on May 21.

Under the guide of Summer Orientation Counselors, new students began their Washburn experience by learning about facts and opportunities on how to be successful during their first year.

“We really try to give them the whole picture, so they know what they’re getting into before school starts,” said Jack Van Dam, a SOC.

Van Dam said he and other SOCs try to make the transition from high school to college as painless as possible. He said they have different sessions for both parents and students. “We really just try to show them as much of Washburn as possible and just have different informational sessions for them to try to get a picture of what Washburn is all about”.

During the sessions, students learn expectations of the classroom environment, register for their first semester courses, explore the MyWashburn portal and take their student ID photo.

Karsen McCarter, an incoming freshman, will be majoring in English with an emphasis in writing. Her reasons for her choosing Washburn include its proximity to her home and its lower prices compared to other state schools.

“I looked at their leadership program and I really liked that,” McCarter said. McCarter said she also wanted to study abroad and liked what Washburn has to offer regarding international studies.

The next four orientation dates are full – the next open orientation will be on June 17. Students and parents that want to attend should visit Students should bring a photo ID to get a student ID. When students and parents arrive, they should expect to be greeted by SOCs like Van Dam.

“I absolutely love Washburn. I love working with people,” Van Dam said. “Getting to work with incoming freshmen and their parents and guests is something that really excites me.”