On The Trinity Perspective, you will find those answers—or at least someone who asked the same questions. We have been in your shoes. The Trinity Perspective collects advice and stories from current students, parents, faculty, and alumni to share with you—prospective students, families, and the Trinity community.

By Danielle Treviño '19

It is everyone’s favorite time of year - New Student Orientation (NSO)! College is an exciting time, and NSO is probably one of the most exciting parts. Here are some useful tips to help you survive this week.




GENERAL TIPS

As an Orientation Team (O-Team) veteran and San Antonio local, these are tips I would highly recommend every new student remember throughout NSO week and the rest of their time at Trinity.


HYDRATE OR DIE-DRATE  (Hydration)


On behalf of Trinity University, please make your health a priority during NSO week. Our ancient O-Team proverb is Hydrate or Die-Drate.

Hydration is key! San Antonio is very hot, sometimes uncomfortably hot, and we want you all to be safe. We have filtered water stations all over campus, so make sure to carry your reusable water bottle with you throughout the week. In addition to drinking water, make sure to wear comfortable and heat appropriate clothes for move-in day. Although you may not be carrying all the boxes, breathable clothing is still important.


MR. SANDMAN, BRING ME A DREAM (Sleep)


We all know that it is tempting to stay up late talking to your new friends, especially during NSO, but please remember to get a decent amount of sleep. The NSO schedule can sometimes feel a bit overwhelming, and that feeling will probably be amplified if you are pulling all-nighters.

Pushing yourself too hard or hiding in your room are not great NSO strategies. Don’t be afraid to sit with random people, and make sure to take a breather once in a while if you feel tired. As a new student, you only get one NSO experience – don’t waste it going through it as a zombie!


STEP OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE (Making Connections)


Get out of your comfort zone, while also being aware of your limits. Push yourself to engage in things at orientation that might make you a little uncomfortable at first, but remember to always put your own mental and physical health first.

That being said, don’t be afraid to come out of your shell – everyone is new! Everyone’s feeling a little awkward, and odds are they’ll be relieved that you made the first move to talk to them. NSO is the best time to make new friends and establish friendships that will last throughout your time at Trinity. We all know it’s hard, but pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone can give you memories and friends for a lifetime! Also, don’t feel embarrassed about feeling homesick; there is a good chance everyone else is feeling the same way. 


ASK.FM (Asking Questions)


Don't be afraid to ask any questions! O-Team, ResLife, faculty, and administration are all here to help you, and they want to help make your transition into college as smooth as possible. O-Team and Res Life both go through training before NSO starts to ensure we can assist new students with any issues that may arise.



MOVE-IN DAY

You applied and now you have arrived. It’s finally move-in day! We know that is going to be a big day for you and your family, and we want to make your transition as easy as possible. These are some tips and things to expect on move-in day:


WHO ARE THE PEOPLE CARRYING MY THINGS? (Team Trinity)



As you arrive on campus, you’ll notice a bunch of random people in white t-shirts carrying totes and boxes from cars and taking them into various buildings. Eventually, as your vehicle moves forward, they will approach you and carry your stuff away – do not be alarmed! It’s Team Trinity and they are here to help make the moving process as easy as possible for you and your family.

Team Trinity is a group comprised of current students, faculty, staff, and alumni who volunteer to help move in incoming students. This tradition stems from the students, faculty, and community volunteers who transferred University property from the Woodlawn campus to our current Skyline campus on May 13, 1952. In order to make sure all your belongings go to the correct place, please make sure to label your things with your name and room number!


COOL UPPERCLASSMEN (Meeting your RA and O-Teamer)



Throughout move-in day you are going to meet some really well-informed and energetic upperclassmen who will successfully guide you through New Student Orientation (NSO) week. These students will be your residence hall’s resident assistant (RA) and O-Teamer — we will all be dressed in labeled maroon t-shirts in order to be easily identified.

Utilize your RA and O-Teamer as much as you need to. Please reach out to us; our job is to help you navigate all aspects of NSO week. You’ll also receive your NSO fold-out schedules from us. I would 10/10 recommend NOT losing those!


ALL MY FRIENDS (Ice-breakers)


One of my favorite parts of NSO was doing ice-breakers with my hall and O-Teamer (long live the Class of 2019’s Beze 2nd Even). I remember being understandably nervous to meet my hallmates at first, but once our O-Teamer did various ice-breakers with us we all became friends. O-Teamers are super friendly and will engage you in different activities throughout NSO that will allow for your hall and incoming class to get to know each other better.

Establishing early bonds with my hallmates made me less alone during the rest of NSO. You might feel uncomfortable doing the hall ice-breakers at first, but you’ll be grateful that you did them when you find yourself not wanting to eat in Mabee alone during the first few weeks.



EVENTS

Go to as many events as you can possibly stand; NSO is a great chance to meet new friends, ask questions, and get to know about your new school. These events aren’t “stupid." They have been carefully chosen and refined throughout years of experience. I would highly encourage going to all the orientation events! You get what you give out of orientation.


ON MY HONOR (Convocation)



The convocation is a formal academic ceremony that mirrors graduation four years later; proper decorum and attire are required for students and families in attendance. Although that description isn’t the most exciting, it’s actually a vivid memory from my own NSO experience. Convocation is one of the few NSO events that requires you to dress more formally. In my apartment, I actually have a group picture of my entire first-year hall and RA dressed really nicely for convocation.

If you decide to wear a skirt or dress for convocation, please make sure they are long enough. The reason that’s important is because during convocation you lean over a table to sign the honor code in front of faculty members. We don’t want any embarrassing moments to happen during this ceremony. 


HIGH-FIVE (Playfair)


Endless high-fives. Countless conversations with strangers. The most intense game of rock-paper-scissors in existence. It’s time for Playfair! It’s hard to think of an NSO event more memorable than Playfair. It’s a staple tradition and experience that is unique to Trinity. It is an opportunity to get outside of your comfort zone, meet new people, and engage in fun group activities that are led by O-Team.

Playfair is a high-energy event that can be a bit overwhelming but is fun once you allow yourself to get out of your shell. It’s also a great way to meet a ton of people in a short amount of time. After meeting so many people at Playfair, you’ll probably recognize some of your classmates walking around campus.


SIGN ME UP (Student Involvement Fair)



You've moved in, signed up for classes, and now you're looking for ways to get involved on campus!
Come to our Student Involvement Fair (SIF), which runs at the start of every semester at Trinity. SIF is a great way to meet other students that share the same interests as you!

This is where you find out about academic student groups, Greek life, etc. If you find a group you are interested in, make sure to give them your contact information so you find out about their upcoming meetings or events. If you notice that Trinity doesn’t have a club for something (which I would honestly be shocked by because we literally have a club for everything), you can always start a new club, and you only need ten members!

Pumped for NSO? Learn more!

With this guide in hand, you've got all the tools you need to survive and thrive NSO week. Welcome to Trinity!


About Danielle

Danielle Treviño '19 is a communication and studio art major from San Antonio, Texas, and was last year's O-Team co-captain. She is passionate about bringing people together through a shared appreciation for art and hopes to bridge the relationship between art and the general community.