(Posted August 15, 2013)

Students on an Inbound retreat hike through the woods.

Students on an Inbound retreat hike through the woods.

Now that August has arrived, students are shopping for textbooks and last-minute dorm necessities. But they should also remember to have fun. Juniata College's extended orientation program, Inbound, which consists of 17 themed retreats, helps initiate students to college life. Maggie Burkett '15, peer leader for camping, and Robert Draham '14 ), peer leader for community service, share how their journey to college began with Inbound - and how they wouldn't have had it any other way.

Q. Students constantly try to predict their college lifestyle and wonder how they will adjust to living somewhere new, so what should students know before arriving for Inbound?

Maggie: Go in with an open mind, you're going to meet many different people from different walks of life. Last year we had seven international students in one group of 10 freshmen.

Q. How does Inbound help you balance meeting new people and adjusting to your new surroundings?

Maggie: Inbound allows you to get oriented with the campus and meet new people before school begins. It is important to be yourself. Everyone is nervous, so don't feel intimidated or scared because everyone in your group is going through the same thing.

Q. What else can students expect to learn from participating in Inbound?

Robert: It's nice to move in without classes starting the next day -- you get a chance to learn more about the Huntingdon community and things to do off campus.

Q. Now that you have experienced Inbound as a participant and as a leader, how has Inbound impacted your college experience?

Robert: I enjoyed the program and have participated all four years. This is my third time serving an Inbound leader, and I still keep in touch with some of the people I met freshman year.

Maggie: Joining Inbound has been a high point in my four years at Juniata. I love the outdoors and I got to meet and get to know people who also enjoy the outdoors. It's definitely something that all freshmen should do.

--Lauren Frantz '15 , Juniata Online Journalist

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.