CBU’s New Student Orientation is like no other. The university not only organizes a series of exciting events and worshipful sessions, but also demonstrates the unity between CBU staff and students. The time put in by all of the departments and student leaders sends a message that CBU truly cares about its students. I feel privileged to say that I contributed to that.

It was only a year ago when I was one of those nervous freshmen moving into Smith Hall carrying my guitar in one hand and keeping my nervous anticipation to myself. I remember meeting my hall mates and countless others while I was directed between different informational sessions, group games and worship services. Thinking back, I really didn’t know what was going on most of the time. I just followed the crowds of unfamiliar faces and let the friendly CBU upperclassmen show me the ropes.

This year, however, I was the friendly FOCUS Leader answering campus questions and hi-fiving every freshmen that passed by. Something I learned quickly this year was that my role as student leader greatly contrasted my role from last year. There is so much planning that goes on before the event, and during the weekend it was our job to keep it running smoothly.

The FOCUS team definitely stayed busy, but we loved being there every second. Right from the beginning on Thursday morning I was there at the first tables welcoming new students and handing them their ID cards and orientation name tags. It was exciting to know that I was a part of their first impression of CBU. That energy pushed me through the rest of the day which varied from moving students into Tower Hall and Simmons to handing out Lancer shirts at check-in. True, that did involve several trips carrying boxes of clothes and hangers up and down staircases, but I was feeling just as excited, if not more so, than the students I was helping. Just knowing how much fun they would have this weekend was enough to make me forget that I was even working. I can’t really call it work if I’m enjoying every minute of it. Then I met the students in my FOCUS group that night, and it was just amazing to talk with them and hear about their lives and impressions of CBU. From there, the weekend passed by quickly with fun events like Clash N Bowl and Price is Right. I honestly had more fun being a leader during all of these events than I did experiencing them last year.

That joy we felt while helping all of the new students really made the weekend special for us all. I definitely had no idea that I could have so much fun directing lost parents to info sessions or seeing freshmen reactions to the ADC. I can’t wait until next year to do it all again.