Orientation leading turns out to be a rewarding experience

Jordan Sarat , Reporter

Orientation often invokes a variety of different perspectives, emotions, and reactions from incoming students. The purpose of orientation is for students to become more comfortable with their surroundings and to meet people. Meet the faces of orientation, orientation leaders.

Orientation leaders serve a variety of different roles: a friend, a peer, a student, a parent, and most importantly, the first taste of SUNY Buffalo State. Being an orientation leader is just that, you are a student leader and the examples of what these incoming students can strive to become. As an orientation leader, you undergo training and begin to understand all of the background of what goes into this type of production.

Orientation is like a well-planned theater production. Each orientation leader has a script and plays an essential and vital role in helping incoming students begin their ever-evolving journey at Buffalo State. The director behind the scenes is Daniel Heims, with the orientation office. Without his understanding and planning, the production would not run as smoothly as it does.

Mr. Heims spends numerous hours interviewing and preparing orientation leaders for their big debut. Without his delicate planning and encouraging words, orientation would not be the same. Being an orientation leader is a unique experience, from training to the days of orientation.

Training is six days of understanding all the nooks and crannies of not only orientation, but also Buffalo State. You learn about how to assist students with Degree Works, to things like where to locate the Career Development Center. Interestingly enough, you learn all about what an incoming student and even what parents may want to know about Buffalo State.

The next few days include preparation of folders, lanyards, and moving boxes to begin the process of checking in students. Check-in is when students first meet the faces of orientation, receiving folders full of information. The next two days, orientation leaders meet students and begin the production of orientation for first year students.

My experience as an orientation leader has been nothing short of phenomenal. Orientation not only provided me with new friendships, but also helped me break out of my shell. My students, to this day, call and ask questions or e-mail me with questions about campus. Knowing that they refer to me for guidance is the biggest blessing of all.

During the first year of college, students are faced with many challenges, and the best part about being an orientation leader is helping those students overcome those challenges.

Transfer orientation is an experience that I have had on both sides. As a transfer student myself, I understood that Buffalo State was different. It wasn’t until I was involved in orientation that I truly understood how different Buffalo State is. Being an orientation leader is one of the most challenging and rewarding college experiences I have ever had. I am proud to be a face of orientation.

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