With nearly half of Trinity’s undergraduate students living off campus, the College found new ways to help commuting students feel welcome on campus this year.
For the first time, commuting students stayed in the dorms overnight during First Year Forum (FYF), a five-day course designed to introduce students to Trinity. In the past, these students returned home each day after attending required FYF events but often missed out on the evening activities.
Becky Starkenberg, coordinator of First Year Experience, believes the new system helps with the transition process.
“First Year Forum is best experienced as a 24-hour, five-day retreat where students have structured and informal time to engage with one another,” said Starkenberg. “This enabled our first-time freshmen to connect and form community at a critical time in their experience. Freshmen are being mentored in small groups by faculty and student mentors, but also need to make peer connections.”
After staying on campus for the five days, two students decided to live on campus for the school year.
Commuter Meal Plan
Another new offering for commuters is the commuter meal plan. The plan provides flexibility for commuters who wish to enjoy regular meals at the cafeteria or Bootsma Bookstore Café.
“I like the meal plan because I can eat at school on a somewhat regular basis and not have to worry about buying food or cooking at home,” said Kevin Hahn ’13 of Cedar Lake, Indiana.
Forty-two students signed up for this new option for the fall semester.