More than 150 incoming students took part in the first ROAR summer orientation on Brenau University’s historic Gainesville campus July 15-16.
ROAR, which stands for Readiness, Orientation, Advising and Registration, is a new overnight event in which new and transfer students register for classes and get a taste of the Brenau experience.
“ROAR helps aid a smooth transition from committed to enrolled student as it enhances the preparedness and excitement of those in the incoming class,” Director of Undergraduate Admissions Rhett Sapough said. “The more prepared and excited students are, the more likely they are to enroll and persist.”
The event was a collaboration between Admissions, Student Services and the Center for Academic Success.
“Our collaborative effort was designed to positively impact the experience of our incoming students and help them integrate into the campus community and culture,” Sapough said. “ROAR helps students mature from the anticipation of becoming a university student to the realization of that goal, allowing them to embrace a new aspect of their identity as a Brenau student with their new classmates.”
Aside from registering for their classes, students were able to meet with their advisors, get help with financial aid and accounting, and connect with other students through games and activities.
“Everyone here is super nice,” Gracie Rivas, an incoming freshman nursing major, said. “I have over 20 friends here now. It’s very friendly.”
“I loved Brenau the moment I visited,” said incoming freshman Eleanor Lee, who has not yet declared a major. “I’ve met so many people. I’m happy that I’ve made friends.”
Director of Student Engagement Allison Lauricella said ROAR’s activities were designed to help the incoming class get comfortable and feel welcome.
“This event gives incoming students a chance to make connections and engage with our faculty, staff and campus prior to arriving in the fall,” Lauricella said. “It gives them an opportunity to see and get to know the place that will be their home for the next four years.”
Students were assigned to dorms and stayed overnight on Brenau’s campus after enjoying DIY activities and lawn games while waiting for registration appointments and team-building exercises. They also got to see what Gainesville had to offer at the city’s annual Beach Bash at the Lake Lanier Olympic Venue. Lauricella said there was also an information session for parents, as well as information about Greek Life, Career Services, the Honors Program, Athletics and the Center for Health and Well-being.