SIUE campus welcomes 1,700 freshmen for fall start

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville welcomed approximately 1,100 freshmen on Thursday, Aug. 15, for Move-in Day. The annual event has the campus bustling with activity and excitement for the Class of 2023’s academic journey.

Those moving to campus are among the nearly 1,700 first-time freshmen attending SIUE.

Approximately 440 student volunteers, called Movers and Shakers, along with nearly 80 administrators, faculty and staff helped streamline the move-in process, so the new students could get settled into their home away from home in either Woodland, Prairie or Bluff Halls.

“Are you crying? Don’t cry. I love you,” said freshman Kailey Blanton to her mother as they unpacked her belongings.

“We are super proud of Kailey,” her dad explained. “Today we’re filled with mixed emotions. She’s leaving home, but we are looking forward to her career getting started at SIUE. We feel welcome already.”

Kailey and her new roommate, Allory, met via social media and became fast friends.

“I’m excited to be at SIUE, because it’s not too big or too small,” Kailey said. “We’re making our room cute and fun, so it feels like home.”

“We know this is a special day of transition for our new students and their families. We do all we can to make it a smooth, efficient process for them, so they can focus on getting settled in their rooms,” said University Housing Interim Director Mallory Sidarous. “It’s always wonderful to see our campus community, including students, faculty, staff and administrators, come together to welcome our new students to their home away from home.”

“I enjoy helping during freshmen move-in, because I get to engage with the new students and tell them about all of the great events happening on campus,” explained Mover and Shaker Keyara Harshaw, a junior studying public health on the pre-dental track. “My advice to them is to get involved on campus, meet as many people as possible, get out of your residence hall, venture off-campus sometimes and just make a lot of friends.”

“I’m excited to be here, meet new people and take this next step in life,” said freshmen biology major Jesse Harris, of Springfield.

“My husband, an SIUE alumnus, and I were absolutely elated when Jesse made the decision to select SIUE for his next quest,” added Nina Harris. “We want him to, of course, work hard and make the grade, but also enjoy the ride. I’ll miss him tremendously, but I’m so very excited to see what the future holds for him.”

“I remember moving in as a freshman and appreciating all of the friendly faces that offered to help me,” said Mover and Shaker Pedro Carriloo, a sophomore electrical engineering major. “I’m glad to be here to help today. I love the sense of community at SIUE. I hope the freshmen enjoy their first year at SIUE!”

Move-in Day marks the start of the SIUE Experience for incoming students. The SIUE Experience aims to create a sense of community and connection to the university, introduce the SIUE values, put citizenship into action and set the stage for student success and retention.

Students will attend an academic convocation ceremony on Friday, Aug. 16 in the Vadalabene Center. The ceremony will be followed by a grand Cougar Welcome parade where community members, SIUE alumni, faculty and staff will celebrate the Class of 2023 as they walk through campus.

Additionally, students will take part in a community service day on Saturday, Aug. 17.

A complete schedule of events for the SIUE Experience is available at siue.edu/admitted/experience/.

PHOTO: A group of student volunteers, called Movers and Shakers, help unload items and get freshmen settled during SIUE’s Move-in Day.

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