Overview: It is orientation week. New people are joining our community. If you are one of them welcome! For existing community members, this is our chance to be welcoming, remembering what it was like when we just got started. Reading time ~ 5 minutes.
It is mid year orientation time!
New students are joining the Flinders community.
If you are one of those new students, welcome! It is great to have you here at Flinders and I hope your time here with us is a blast. The first few weeks are a bit of a whirlwind. Stick close to the orientation website and social media channels to keep track of what is happening. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. If they relate to health and wellbeing services, you are welcome to ask me (firstname.lastname@example.org). If you find yourself in the orientation portal, there is a good chance you’ll meet me (in the virtual sense) at our Health, Counselling and Disability Services stand. I also have a session running tomorrow called “Introduction to health and wellbeing services available at Flinders” where you can ask me questions. If you are on campus, visit the Oasis Community Centre and have a chat to one of the team. You’ll find the centre opposite Car Park 5, as you walk through the laneway past the library. J7 on the campus map.
If you are staff, my best wishes during this very busy time of year. If we (Health, Counselling and Disability Services and Oasis) can help you acclimatise your new students in any way, please reach out. It doesn’t necessarily need to be during orientation week specifically. We can come talk to your cohort at any time.
If you are an existing student, think back to your first couple of weeks. If you see new students on campus looking a bit lost, check in to see if they are OK and give them some guidance. Those simple helpful connections in the first few overwhelming weeks can make a huge difference.
Even though I’ll actually spend the bulk of the orientation weeks working from home, I am mindful of just how much the campus comes alive during Orientation weeks. Stalls, free stuff, activities, events, extra people. Regardless of whether you are an existing student or new student, it is worth taking advantage of this activity. Get some free food, meet some new people, find clubs that are of interest to you. Titrate your level of activity based on your personality. If you are the shy type, you might do this in small doses. If you are the extravert, you might overload on it. All is good and welcome.
A modern university like Flinders is a big community. This has lots of benefits. There are likely many more things to do here than you might be used to from school or coming from the workforce. But like a big community, it can also take a little while to find your place, because there is so much to do. There is no rush. Settle in at a pace that is right for you. The key is reaching out on a regular basis to foster and nurture small connections. Speaking to someone at a lecture. Meeting and chatting with a librarian about how find your readings. Joining a club or reaching out to speak to one of the student council. If you are off-campus, no problems. The Flinders Orientation Platform is live, with lots of sessions and stall to check out.
Basically put yourself out there a little. This goes for existing students as well. Your academic studies are no doubt important and there is no shortage of advice on how to do that well. Student Learning Support Services are great for that. We have a study tips document as well. But it is in the connections we form at uni – peers, colleagues, supervisors, support services – where the actual true university experience takes shape.
I’m just happy to see the Flinders University Community grow a little bit more 👩🧓👱♀️👳♂️🧔🏾👨🏾🦰👩🏾🦲🙍🏼♂️🙎🏼♀️👵🏾👩🏾🦰