2008 July 23
Past few days have been spent on nonscience. I’ve been working on our welcome and orientation for the new grad students that will be arriving over the next several weeks. (This is a job I share with my classmate Statia, but she’s on her honeymoon right now, so she gets a free pass for a little while …)
Our original goal was to put together a really good orientation day right when the students all arrive on campus. But, while working on our plans over the past few days, I looked at the dates and realized that the students are arriving more at a steady rate than in one big bunch, so I think that a lot of the setup tasks that we’d planned to do during the orientation day don’t really make sense. The earlier arrivals will have them all taken care of by the time of orientation.
I’ve been trying to restructure our plans. It’s looking like the “getting set up” activities will take place individually, as people trickle in. Most of these involve filling out forms and registering for things, and I think we can be most helpful by just explaining the unclear form fields and telling people what pieces of information they’ll need.
But there are still activities that should happen during the orientation day: some things can be put off, like discussing what classes to take, and I think we want to have a day where we officially put them all in a room and say, “Here, this is your class.” This sort of orientation day will probably be a lot easier to organize than the more in-depth one that we’d be envisioning earlier. So that’s kind of nice.