Orientation programs ready to prep students for fall return

Though they can’t gather on campus just yet, new and returning Brock students can come together virtually to access to an array of orientation programs that will prepare them for their University journey this fall.

Orientation programming kicks off Saturday, July 10 with a live launch event for Smart Start, led by Brock’s Recruitment team.

Participants will watch a live welcome from Interim President Lynn Wells at 11 a.m. before taking part in information and Q&A sessions on a variety of topics, including academic success, finances, residence and obtaining a Brock Card.

Once the live launch has wrapped up, the program will continue to offer online support for students throughout July and August. Recordings of the event sessions will be available online as well as course registration assistance and review provided through virtual chats or meetings with current Brock students.

While the delivery of Smart Start may look different than it has in the past, Courtney Keogh, Brock’s Manager of National Recruitment, said its goals remain the same.

“We still want everyone in attendance to feel that this is their first official day as a Brock student and to be able to do all of the things they need to orient themselves,” she said.

With courses delivered in several different ways, Keogh said Brock’s Smart Start team could be particularly helpful to students who are selecting courses for the first time.

“As students register, there are a variety of new course codes, such as in-person and synchronous,” she said. “As students process which of these options works best for them, we have a team of experienced upper-year students from all over the world ready to welcome them and help them through the process.”

Students will soon be able to attend on-campus tours, but, in the meantime, another program is also available to help new and returning students make social connections before they set foot on campus.

The Leap program for first-year students and Leap Up program for upper-year students aim to familiarize Brock students who have not yet attended in-person activities at the University with new friends, student leaders and campus resources.

“Attending Leap or Leap Up gives students the much-needed opportunity for connection,” said Leadership Development Co-ordinator Travis Greene. “Connecting with other students, student leaders on campus and various service professionals in their home away from home is an amazing way for students to maximize their University experience.”

To do this, while gathering virtually, sessions in July and August will devote time to team building exercises, digital tours of downtown St. Catharines, showcasing volunteer opportunities in Niagara and further diving into the many on-campus resources available.

Students also have access to additional resources, such as the asynchronous BU101 skills program to build in-class skills and Engagement Communities to connect students with others with shared interests.

Brock’s Director of Student Life and Success Brad Clarke said all of the University’s orientation programs work together so that students feel connected to the Brock community.

“There are so many ways for students to get involved and feel at home here at Brock,” said Clarke. “From Smart Start to Leap and more, we know that there are summer orientation programs for everyone to help them begin to make the most out of their time at the University, even before their first day on campus.

To learn more about all of Brock’s Orientation programs, visit the Orientation website.

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