Saturday, July 11, 2015

Outstanding Orientation

After a week of site touring and college campus experience, it was finally time to live in one. We left the Omni hotel in a taxi and arrived on the University of Chicago campus around noon. All I could think about was my roommate. What would be he like? What will he look like? Would he have pretty blue eyes? Or would he have have long luscious hair? My cohort and I walked into the main residential office, met by four tables with UChicago students sitting behind them. We went to each station and was handed our ID, a free cinch bag, which is always nice, maps, and a schedule. I went straight to my assigned dorm, so excited to meet my roommate. I opened the door but no one was there.

What if I didn't have a roommate? That would be so boring. I dropped my stuff off in the room and met back downstairs with my cohort to explore the campus. Hopefully I will have a roommate by the time I come back.

UChicago has the most Hogwarts like feeling compared to the other three campuses we visited. The gothic architecture and green vines and foliage make it feel like a castle. I really liked it. Once we finished exploring we all went back to our dorm rooms to unpack. At this point, I honestly forgot all about my roommate. I opened my door and found all these strangers sitting in my room.

His name is John, John Marshall and it looked like he brought the whole party. His father, mother, and sister all came to see him off. John is in the 10th grade at a small boarding school in Florida. He's into basketball, rowing, and art. At first John didn’t talk much, it seemed as though I was talking to his parents most of the time. I think I am going to be the one to break the ice. Although, we don't have much in common, I think we are going to get along just fine. After introducing myself to him and his family, we were off to orientation.

Orientation was everything I imagined. Except I didn’t imagine it to be a lot. I knew it would be a seminar hall explaining all the do's and don’t’s of this summer. It was exactly that. After a full list of rules and introduction of all the RA's, we split off into groups determined by a colored star on our name tag. This corresponded to the RA with the same color. Katie Bart, my RA gave 10 other people and I a tour of the campus. She went every where, from the school cathedral to an ancient history museum. I also found that many of the students in this summer program are international students I almost believe that there are more international students than locals. It would be cool to get an international student as a room mate. Then I could learn about a whole new culture. It was cool that Aisha and Tamika from my original cohort was in my RA group as well. So I didn't have to start off with complete strangers.

The kids in my group weren't strangers for long. We began the afternoon with icebreakers to get to know each other better. The icebreaker involved saying your name along with a food starting with the same letter. The catch being, you had to say everyone else's name before yours. From now on I am known as Boba Brandon. The second icebreaker was called Mafia. In which we had to work together to try to figure out the two killers amongst our group. This was fun because we got to know each other’s personalities, some yelled out who the killer was while others sat quietly, but could have been the most deadly. After a long day of exploring and settling in, I worked up an appetite.

The dining hall, like most colleges, was buffet style with food ranging from pizza to tacos. I am definitely going to gain weight this summer. Dinner was met with a residential meeting explaining all the curfew and house rules. We must be checked into the dorm by 10 PM Monday through Thursday and 11 PM Fridays and Saturdays. These are reasonable times and I am sure I can meet them. I can’t wait to see what happens next.

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