First Year Forum Starts Us Off Right

Danielle Scobey, October 18, 2018

Starting this year, First Year Forum was introduced as a way to help integrate new students into Marlboro College’s unique community. Launched by Catherine O’Callaghan, assistant dean of academic support and advisins, and Jeremy Holch, director of academic support services, the program was designed with the acknowledgement that starting college, whether it be straight from high school, or as a transfer student, can be pretty difficult. Spread out over a semester in ten sessions, the program covers several important subjects for new students, including college policies, time-management, and resources available on campus. Sessions are run by various other peer advisors, faculty, and staff, who bring their own insight into what would be helpful to new students. First Year Forum provides easy access to answers to whatever questions new students may have, and new connections that are helpful to furthering success in the Marlboro community.

During the most recent meeting, Jeremy gave a short, yet concise, presentation on time-management and planning. With the busy lives of college students in mind, the presentation provided examples of well-structured schedules, and advice on making sure there was always enough time to get everything done. There were even some laughs as the presentation ended with a picture of Jeremy’s dog, Lexi, his “alarm clock.” After the talk, students were provided with tools to help organize their own schedules. We left with the realization that although college life can feel overwhelming, it can be managed through less stressful means.

Apart from imparting wisdom to new students, First Year Forum also provides a way for students to leave their individual mark on the college forever. There is in the works, for the coming months, a plan to create a mural representing the incoming class. With the theme of “Roots and Routes,” it is to be planned by the students and facilitated by faculty. In groups formed by the most recent Bridges trips, students will each help to design pieces of the mural. The overall goal is to bring together all of the pieces into a single cohesive and beautiful piece of art that represents the newcomers of 2018. A new program with big aspirations, First Year Forum holds the potential to be one of those long standing Marlboro College traditions that every student has fond memories of.

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  • Jeremy Holch, director of academic support services, seen “supporting” a black walnut tree.


(a mostly random selection of Marlboro microdestinations)