After all of the items from Bed, Bath and Beyond were unpacked, and after the tears dried, it was finally time to begin and reflect on what was and what will be the first week of college.

While the activities planned for orientation were very effective in helping us acclimate ourselves to UR, I find that the lessons we learned in kindergarten will help us get through the first year of ?the best years of our lives.?

The first bit of wisdom I urge you to remember is the importance of sharing. Although I have two older siblings, I have never had to share a room for an extended period of time before. I?ve never even gone to ?sleep away? camp, and I did not know what to expect when arriving here. I wasn?t sure if my habits would scare my roommate or if my compulsive tendencies would simply creep her out. I also wondered whether I would be comfortable sharing my food and clothing.

As these thoughts increased my existing anxiety, I also became wary about sharing myself and my short history. This has gotten somewhat easier, but remains as a bit of a struggle.

I miss talking to my best friends and having them know exactly what I?m going to say. I miss not having to explain my obscure ?Friends? or ?Saved by the Bell? references. I also miss just talking and not having to say, ?Don?t tell this to anyone.?

While the friends I have made in my short time at UR are certainly trustworthy, it?s impossible to trust them as much as someone I have known my entire life. Building trust will be one of the greatest challenges of living with people I don?t know, but I feel it is the most important skill to learn ? and in the end, the most rewarding.

My second lesson ? always walk with a buddy and stay in groups. This certainly applies to walking alone on the campus at night, but it holds true in any college social situation.

Whether it?s going to a party or to class, it?s always nice to have someone who you can talk to. By simply being friendly or introducing yourself to random people, making friends is the best way to get through a tough transition or a sad week, such as the one that has just passed.

Furthermore, if orientation taught me anything, it was to acknowledge that it is much easier to act like a fool when you are amongst others.

While the final lesson is certainly not the most important, it should still be mentioned. I?ve quickly learned to be careful about what I put in my mouth.

Alright, you can all get your minds out of the gutter, I am referring to the food at UR and what I choose to drink. Before, I knew not to take a drink from a stranger or ever put my cup down at a party, but I wish I had been warned about the consistency of some of the food at Danforth. Waffles have quickly become a staple in my diet, but the stir-fry was a one-time adventure ? a scary one at that.

Thus, from the sandbox to a frat party, I suggest that the Class of 2005 heed my suggestions and make their adjustment to college life as painless and successful as possible.

Reyhani can be reached at mreyhani@campustimes.org



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