Orientation worth the mandatory trip for new students

Students can expect a fun and informative experience at both the UMSU and U1 orientations this year.

“During U1 Orientation, students can look forward to meeting their peers, gaining insight from current U of M students, having the opportunity to explore campus, ask questions and find out where their classes are before classes start,” said Tina Riggs, special events coordinator for U1.

A wide variety of games, contests and activities will be available to incoming students, including a variety of performances by local bands during U1 Orientation which will take place Sept. 7 and 8 and a free hot dog lunch on Sept. 8.

Other perks students can look forward to from the U1 department include prize giveaways, a giant inflatable twister game, a free photo booth, henna tattoos, a caricature artist and Bison Bonus Bingo, with a chance to win money towards tuition.

Shinerama will also hold a mini-putt game for donations and there will be cotton candy for donations towards the U of M food bank.

“Orientation is looking to ease the transition from high school to university before classes start, so that students can start their new academic career off on the right foot,” said Riggs.

The University of Manitoba Students’ Union (UMSU) will also be putting on a variety of events after U1 Orientation is complete, under the theme of “Prairie Pride.”

“It can be difficult for new students to absorb everything during their first few days on campus so our goal is for students to get introduced to UMSU, knowing that UMSU is there for them,” said Heather Laube, UMSU president.

Prairie Pride events will kick off on Sept. 9 and go on until Sept. 17.

Some of the events include various performances from artists such as Doc Walker and Fred Penner, a tailgate tent party, a drag show and UMSU’s annual boat cruise party. There will also be a joint event between UMSU and the University of Winnipeg Students’ Association (UWSA), which will take place at the Pyramid Cabaret.

UMSU will also feature several themed days during this time including Bison Pride, Fine Art Pride and World Culture Pride.

Although UMSU’s events don’t begin until after U1 Orientation is complete, they will still be involved with U1 Orientation by giving tours of the campus and talking to classrooms, as well as handing out free schedule planners and hosting a draw to win prizes such as an iPad, $1,000 towards tuition, gift certificates to Degrees and IQ’s as well as UMSU merchandise.

While orientation is mandatory for all first year students, there is no charge or cost for the event.

Incoming U1 student Jeff Stefaniuk is hoping that U1 Orientation will give him information on how to get around and some insight into campus life.

Stefaniuk said he hoped orientation organizers would be able to give incoming students such as himself “all the information we need without droning on us, getting side-tracked or overwhelming us with unimportant things we don’t care about.”