The Canyon dorms | Photo by Jonathan Bratthall Tideman

Leaving the nest

As the second month of the school year is well under way, first year students start to settle in to their new living situations on campus.
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As the second month of the school year is well under way, first year students start to settle in to their new living situations on campus.

Moving out of a family home to a university can be a daunting experience. The idea of leaving the safety and stability that parents have provided their whole life is something a lot of young adults have to deal with.

While nerve-wracking, this experience can also be something extremely exciting. Students get to meet new people and make friends from all around the country and the world.

Michael Dunn, who moved from Oakdale, California, describes it as a very new and interesting experience that he’s not used to.

“I come from a small town, so it’s been real different meeting so many new people at once. It’s been real diverse,” Dunn said.

While the idea of meeting new people from around the world can be a lot of fun, leaving the safety of your family and your home is a very different thing. There’s a lot to enjoy with the freedom, but it’s not always easy abruptly leaving your parents.

Baciro Jalo who moved here from Washington, D.C. enjoys his independence.

“I definitely enjoy my total freedom and being away from home. Nobody is telling me what to do and when to do it. It’s still hard because I also miss them,” Jalo said. “We are young and away from our parents, away from people who control us. Here we have total freedom. This is where we choose the way we want our life to be. This is where you can do bad things, and good things, whatever you choose to do.”

Roy Licona-Tamiriz who moved here from Madera, California, describes it almost as a ritual.

“It’s kind of like a bird leaving it’s birds nest. You have to learn on your own and adjust to it all, to the outside environment.”

As the first weeks can be crucial for these young adults to settle in to their new lifestyle, it’s important to reflect on what can be done to make things even easier for them. While setting up freshmen groups and events is a great start, working to make it easier in other ways might help these new students even more.

When asked about if there are things the University could do to help make the process of moving in and settling into the new life on Campus easier Licona-Tamiriz said, “I would say having more freshmen oriented programs, having the freshmen more involved, introduce them to study groups early on in their first classes and get them to interact with each other.”

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