The Class of 2023 finds a home at Queen’s

The Class of 2023 arrived on campus on Saturday, Aug. 31, and since then have been learning about life at Queen’s through this year’s orientation.

After a successful Move-in Day, new students began attending University Orientation events, starting with Queen’s Welcomes U on Saturday evening. Over the course of two sessions, this event gathers the entire incoming class into the main gym of the Athletics and Recreation Centre for an official welcome to the university. As a large group, the students are inspired to make the most of university life and learn what it means to be a part of the Queen’s community. They also learn Queen's traditions, such as how to dance the Oil Thigh and how to cheer "Cha Gheill!" Existere, a social action theatre group comprising Queen’s students, performed original scenes and songs for the new students. The performance, which is ranked by students as one of most engaging and valuable welcoming activities, raises awareness about campus issues that are relevant to first-year students.

Queen’s Welcomes U also marked the first time that Principal and Vice-Chancellor Patrick Deane, who commenced his first term in July, addressed an entire class of Queen’s students in his new role. Ann Tierney, Vice-Provost and Dean of Student Affairs, spoke to the incoming class as well.

“We are excited to welcome the Class of 2023 to Queen’s and to Kingston, as we begin another productive academic year,” says Tierney. “We are also pleased to be welcoming back the returning students, faculty, and staff who work to provide valuable support for the newest members of our community.”

To help promote a culture of safety and mutual respect, University Orientation provides new students with education about consent during their first full day on campus. On Sunday Sept. 1, Karen B.K. Chan delivered a presentation titled “Consent for Real Life” to the incoming class. An award-winning educator on sex and emotional literacy, Chan used stories and humour to talk about healthy relationships, consent, and sexual violence.

After more University and First-Years-Not-In-Residence (FYNIRS), orientation events on Sunday, the faculty-led orientations began. Each faculty has an orientation program that introduces students to life and academics in their area of the university.

Classes at Queen’s will begin on Thursday, Sept. 5, with various orientation activities continuing Friday evening and throughout the weekend. On the final day, Sunday, Sept. 8., students can tour the Athletics and Recreation Centre, as well as Stauffer Library. They will also have the opportunity to participate in a Conflict Management Workshop and Academic Skills Workshops run by Peer Learning Assistants from Student Academic Success Services.

Sunday, Sept. 8 is also Welcome to Kingston Day, which is the official orientation to the Kingston campus for students who spent their first year studying at the Bader College.

Since Aug. 29, the University District Safety Initiative (UDSI) has been in effect and it will remain so until Sept. 9 at 12 p.m. The UDSI, a joint initiative between the City of Kingston, Kingston Police and Queen’s, promotes a culture of safety and respect in the neighbourhoods surrounding the university. Students are being reminded about the UDSI through a variety of communications channels.

To learn more about Orientation Week schedule, visit the Queen’s orientation website.

Note: This article originally appeared in the Queen's Gazette.