The class of 2018 walks through campus at the end of orientation./Courtesy Wabash College
I'm thankful that I now have time to sit down and work on this week's blog. Besides having four meetings to cover this week, yesterday was rather busy with us covering a fire which damaged a historic home on U.S. 231, as well as an early crash on U.S. 40.
There's never really any telling what is going to happen next. We have to be on our toes for the next fire or collision, but that is partially what makes this job exciting.
However, my focus here will be on Freshman Saturday at Wabash College, as well as the orientation period which comes afterward. It's an exciting event for administrators, faculty and staff as the College welcomes a fresh group of students.
What new students and their parents should certainly look forward to is Ringing In. President Greg Hess will ring a hand bell that belonged to Caleb Mills, one of Wabash's first teachers and a champion of public education in Indiana, to perform the ceremony. The tradition dates back to when Mills "rung in" the class of 1833.
Ringing In is a very unique rite of passage, and it is one that begins to forge bonds between classmates and, further, connects them to generations of Wabash alumni. It is nostalgic, at least for me, because I remember how nervous I was, and how I acutely became aware that I wasn't, by any means, going to be the smartest guy in the group.
The class of 2023 should expect to be engaged during orientation, and this goes beyond simply getting acquainted with the campus buildings and meeting people.
They should have the opportunity to think about the importance of the Gentleman's Rule, a purposefully loose guideline to live up to honorably and compassionately. They should get an abundance on how to find support, whether it be academic, emotional or physical, because they should quickly find that professors and staff care about them.
Another important element of orientation is that they will be duly introduced to the Crawfordsville community. There will be one day toward the end of this period when the freshmen will go out and participate in service projects at various organizations. This is a great opportunity to get to know their classmates and what the city offers.
Classes officially start a week from Thursday, and I trust that the class of 2023 will be ready to start their careers at Wabash on the right track. I also hope they stay in the moment, and appreciate what they will become a part of this coming Saturday.