By Frank McIsaac
Current and future Emersonians who want to know what will be in store for next fall’s freshman class during the College’s annual orientation week are going to have to wait until mid-summer to find out.
“It’s too early to tell … the Core staff actually does the planning in the summer. They start their summer planning [on] June 2 and that’s when any of their creative input would really take place,” Jeanne McCue, acting Assistant Dean of Students and a Core staff advisor, said.
She added that some things, such as the organizational fair and the boat cruise, remain the same every year.
The Core staff is the group responsible for the planning and execution of orientation week. Its members meet regularly during the summer booking events and training orientation leaders for each fall’s orientation week.
The Core staff is made up of eight students, one of whom is chairperson. This year’s Core staff members are Buck Jordan, Daniel Dagilis, Kate Hanavan, Heather Hadley, Chris McDonald, Jessica Palmer, Melissa Eaton, and Jennifer Brookings (who is this year’s chairperson).
Both Cathy Malloy, acting Director of Student Activities, and Greg Lindsey, Director of AHANA student affairs, will also advise the Core staff.
According to Brookings, Core staff students will spend the entire summer living in the Little Building on the same floor and conducting meetings. The College allows them live at the Little Building for free and each Core staff member is given a stipend for living expenses over the summer.
McCue says that all of the events are planned by Core alone, and not by anyone within the school’s administration. The only stipulation is that Core event proposals may not violate Emerson policies and can be vetoed by McCue if they are found to violate them.
Brookings, who will be a senior advertising major next fall, said that her job this summer will be a 40 hour a week job and that her staff will work 20 hours a week.
There will be surprises in store for students this fall during orientation week, Brookings said.
The group is still deciding on next year’s orientation theme (last years theme was “Mission Possible”) and colors.
One of last years biggest problems was low turnout at many of the awareness programs.
“I think one of the focuses [this year] will be to encourage more attendance by the new students to some of the awareness programs, whether it be on date rape or issues of diversity. We’ve struggled with attendance with some of these events [in the past] and we would position these events so that more students are gaining this knowledge,” McCue said.
Sources close to Core said that one of the problems from last year was communication and scheduling between Core staff members and Emerson faculty.
Students view orientation as a good experience and appreciate the hard work done by the Core staff.
“There are some people you get to know during that first week and those are friendships that carry you all the way through your college years,” Joel Porter-DeVriese, senior audio major, said.
“It [orientation week] was a lot of fun … [the best thing about the week] were the people that I met there,” William Kingsbury, senior performing arts major, said. He also added that he did wish students had a little more time to explore Boston before classes started.
According to Brookings, anyone interested in becoming a member of Core staff can apply to become a member at the student life office and go through an interview session.
New student move in will be August 31 and September 1 and orientation week will run from the September 2 to 7.
The cost of orientation week is not known yet and will not be set until the Core budget is decided on June 1.