June orientation sessions to move online

Summer orientation sessions will move online as a result of COVID-19, according to Vice President of Student Life Dr. John King. King announced the news in the virtual Student Senate Meeting on April 20.
After exploring different options, the university formed a committee to plan a virtual orientation in June. Carol Sacchetti, assistant dean of students and director of Student Programs, Leadership and Orientation, said the committee is in early planning stages and that they are considering things like session content and creating small group opportunities with the orientation advisor staff. The committee will be discussing what the new schedule will look like and how it will be presented to students. Sacchetti said Student Life and the Office of Admissions will communicate these changes to incoming students.
Summer orientation typically consists of four in-person sessions throughout the month of June. Incoming students choose to attend one of those two-day experiences. Typically involving an overnight stay, these students have the opportunity to get to know and spend time with each other, forming bonds before their first semester begins.
Now these bonds will have to be formed virtually. Despite this change, second-year Orientation Advisor Emma Lovallo is optimistic that the orientation staff will still be able to assist the next incoming class.
“While the news of orientation being moved to an online process was shocking, we are looking forward to adapting our knowledge and training to be as helpful to the class of 2024 as possible,” Lovallo said. “Incoming freshmen will still be assigned a pair of orientation advisors to help guide them through their immersion to the Roger Williams community.”
The virtual June orientation program makes up only one piece of the orientation experience. Sacchetti said students also complete online trainings covering topics on alcohol education, sexual assault prevention and diversity, equity and inclusion. All incoming students participate in fall orientation sessions as well, where they gain more information about starting their careers at RWU.
Sacchetti is looking forward to working with the orientation advisors and working with the committee on this virtual plan that will allow them to support new students and welcome them into the community.