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Advice for the Class of 2014

What I have for everyone this week is a little advice about what to do after deciding on going to Case. I figure at this point, the majority, if not everyone has made up their mind on what they are doing next year and where they are going to school. My goal for this blog is to try and give some advice and insights from personal experience.

My first piece of advice is regarding what to do this summer. Assuming things haven't changed dramatically over the past year, every new student has to complete a new student checklist of sorts. In my opinion, it is very important to jump on doing that as soon as possible and not put it off. The reason I say this is a lot of the items on the list have deadlines, and if you wait too long you might not be happy with what you get. It also helped a ton that my dad motivated me by saying I could get my laptop for school as soon as I completed my part of the checklist. Obviously I did everything as fast as possible.

One of the more important ones to get out of the way early is signing up for your orientation session. For my class, there was a total of four orientation sessions. Three took place during the summer at separate times and the fourth takes place the three days before the official move-in. The fourth one usually fills up the fastest, as it is the most convenient for many of the people that do not live close to Cleveland. Therefore if you want a say in what session you get, I recommend signing up as soon as possible. Now a little bit about my orientation experience. I think of orientation as a great time to get to know Case Western Reserve University's campus and develop some navigation skills from Leutner to Fribley (the two dining halls on campus). My orientation experience did not start nearly as well as I was hoping. My family and I were late on getting here for check-in so I was late for meeting up with my assigned group. Therefore, they left without me and I had the pleasure of being placed in a group with 15 girls, no guys. Not what I was planning on at all, but it worked out okay. At this point now, I haven’t kept up with many of the people I've met during orientation. It's not that they are bad people;, we just went our separate ways with friends when we arrived on campus. My suggestions for orientation are try your best to build some friendships up for when you come to Case in the fall, but don’t be upset if things do not work out the way you planned. I didn’t have a very good orientation experience, and some of my friends here loved orientation. Now after being here for a year, I feel it hasn’t hindered my college experience at all. So what to take from this is, don’t worry about it if you don’t meet anyone you like during orientation, you only are interacting within a very small part of the incoming freshman class. You will find people you like at a later date.

The next big, and probably most important, freshman experience at Case is Welcome Days. I say this because it is the first big step in officially moving away from home and becoming independent. It's the first time you will probably meet your roommate face-to-face and get to know the people living around you. Case does a great job facilitating programs in order to allow all freshman to get to know each other and get used to living away from home. For me this was hard because I've never been overly outgoing, and it was hard not knowing anybody from the get go. But I was lucky and got an awesome roommate that I still get along with very well.He helped me expand my horizons and meet new people. I think one thing you should remember when your trying to meet people in an environment like that is that everyone is just as confused/lost/scared as you are. They want to meet new people and build relationships, so do not be afraid to take a risk and be outgoing. Coming to a new place allows you to start over completely and remake yourself in anyway you wish. All you have to do is take advantage of the opportunity.

Other than that, just do your best to make the most of these experiences to meet people before actual classes start. Once everything gets going, social time definitely gets reduced. If for some reason this doesn't work out, don't worry, you will meet somebody, or they will meet you. Most importantly, get excited for a life changing experience!!!

I love questions, so if anything is confusing about the whole transition process, comment and I can give you my email.

Have a good summer!

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"Coming to a new place allows you to start over completely and remake yourself in anyway you wish. All you have to do is take advantage of the opportunity." Thank you. This is a really useful piece of advice; and I guess that I will bear it in mind and FOLLOW this advice.

I haven't thought a lot about my transition but haha, what I do now is busy at enjoying my holiday. What I concern most is my undecided major and I am trying to learn more about various courses and fields. There is abundant information on Case website. So I sometimes feel at loss in finding the most useful information and am easily distracted by other things. I wonder if amo you ever had similar problems before. Are there any tips about dealing with this problem? Many thanks. :P

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Thank you for thinking my advice is worthwhile! I think that piece of information is very important to a lot of people because students may not have enjoyed their high school experience and may want something new.

In regards to your undecided major, I would not worry too much before the first semester. When you go to orientation make sure you tell them that you are undecided and they can help you pick a variety based upon your general interests.

I never used the website much coming into Case, partially because I did not realize how much information was there, and also cause I had my heart pretty set on what I thought I wanted to do.

The nice thing about Case is that your admitted to the entire school, so you are able to take classes in everything whether it be engineering, arts, science, business, etc.

To sum things up, I wouldnt stress out too much about it, there is plenty of time, more than you think. I would suggest however when you get to Case and start taking classes, go to each of your professors and talk about what they do in their field and what are your options. I would say 95% if not more of the professors are very open to students and can really guide you towards something you can take and enjoy.

I hope this helps and if I need to be more specific or I didnt answer the question good enough let me know! I wanna help cause it can be scary being an incoming student, especially if your unsure of what your want to do.

If not good luck!

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Where do you stay when you attend the orientation exercises? If you don't live locally and you don't move into the dorm for three days do you have to get a hotel?
If you attend one of the ones in the summer do you just treat it like a short vacation and return to school when classes start?
What other things are on the list that you have to do during the summer? Thanks

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Good question I forgot to get into more detail about that.

For orientation everyone, I think even commuters are required to stay in dorms for the three day session. I'm almost positive this is included in everyones admission, and no extra charge to you. For my orientation we were staying on the northside of campus (where the actual freshman dorms are). For your class you guys are staying on the southside, in the sophomore dorms. I think this is because they are finishing up renovations in leutner and that would make it difficult to eat.

If you attend a summer orientation, its just like you said, pretty much a short vacation to cleveland. you are assigned a random roommate for the three days and move out after the session is done. You dont get to leave any stuff there, mostly because all the rooms that you would be living in are not open yet. For the fourth session, if it's like last year, you move into your actual dorm room and you get the extra few days to get used to your actual room. Its not that big of a deal, however I think the fourth one is the most popular because the extra three days to get used to Case while it's fresh in your mind in pretty cool.

As far as the summer list, I dont remember all the specifics, I think they send you a link to the checklist, I'm sure they will be doing that sometime very soon if they havent already. Its basically like signing up for orientation, SAGES, getting an id photo, figuring out housing, getting a computer(if you need one), health forms etc.

This is all assuming they still do the new student checklist (I can't tell for sure, I'm no longer a new student haha.

Hopefully that helps, if not dont be afraid to ask more.

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I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.

Lucy

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Thanks for such an informative posting. My daughter is a freshman and information like this is very helpful as she gets ready to start the next phase of her journey.

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Thanks Derek. I wish her luck on her first year and if you have any more questions feel free to ask!

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I`ve read few of articles on your blog and can say it was really interesting, thanks for sharing that.

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