Summer and Fall Orientation offered virtually


File Photo\The Lions Roar

To ensure the safety of all incoming students, the university has implanted online Summer and Fall Orientation Programs through Moodle. Student will also be able to partake in information sessions via video chat.

Due to limitations, the university is delivering all upcoming Summer and Fall Orientation Programs via online format, an approach unlike any used in the past. 

According to Kay Maurin, chief enrollment management officer, incoming students will have access to the orientation programs through Moodle. They will receive an invitation via email to participate in a program based on the date that they applied to the university.

“Students who were registered for Scholars Orientation in April were moved to the May 28 Orientation,” said Maurin. “These new students, along with those who are attending Summer Semester, will complete orientation and registration first. All other students will be scheduled for orientation in the order in which they applied to Southeastern.”

Along with the orientation invitation, students will receive directions on how to access Moodle and complete the online workshops.

“A new student will be given instructions to access Moodle and complete typical orientation workshops designed to acclimate them to campus life — including how to navigate LEONet and the registration process, an overview of student engagement opportunities, an introduction to campus services and, most importantly, information regarding potential majors and degree programs,” explained Maurin.

The next steps in the online orientation process will connect students to an academic advisor and provide them with instructions for building a course schedule for the semester.

“Once a student completes the Moodle requirements, the student will be connected to the Center for Student Excellence for an individual advising appointment with an academic advisor,” said Maurin. “At the conclusion of the session, students will then be given the instructions to access Southeastern’s registration system for course selection and registration.”

Maurin explained that Orientation Leaders will still play a role in welcoming incoming Lions to the university even though no one is meeting on campus. 

“They will host Zoom information sessions and be available to answer questions and provide guidance through email, Zoom and other social media platforms,” said Maurin. “Additionally, the orientation leaders are also assisting in creating the presentations and workshops for orientation in Moodle.”

Maurin shared that a tentative date for a face-to-face orientation experience is being planned for August in the event that the university declares social interaction on campus safe by that time.

Morgan Guidry, freshman communication major, signed up to be an Orientation Leader for this summer. 

“I became an OL because I came into college not knowing anybody, and that was scary,” said Guidry. “I didn’t want incoming students to feel that same way, so I figured even if the only person they knew was an OL, they still would have someone to reach out to.”

Guidry said the Orientation Leader team began communicating through Zoom when classes transitioned to online before the university announced that orientation would be going virtual.

“In those meetings, we would present about different things on campus, like the Counseling Center or the Center for Student Excellence,” said Guidry. “Once it was announced that we would be moving to online orientation, we discovered that all the presentations we were doing were prepping us for online work.”

Guidry shared that she was prepared to befriend incoming students at in-person orientation. She was initially uncertain about how communication and connection would be successful online, but she has warmed up to the idea.

“As the days go on, I get more and more excited to see where online orientation is going to take us,” expressed Guidry. “It has made me thankful to be an OL. Not everyone has this opportunity, and me and my fellow OLs get to have a unique experience with incoming freshmen. We get to work together to adapt and make changes, and I think that makes us stronger.”

Guidry’s perspective on being a Summer 2020 Orientation Leader has shifted in a positive way.

“I get to take something that started out as bad news and change it to make it a wonderful experience for the freshmen and my OL family,” shared Guidry.