• UChicago community welcomes incoming students

    Orientation Week features celebration and tradition for class of 2017

By Dianna Douglas
Cover photo by Robert Kozloff

The Class of 2017 has arrived on campus this week for orientation, joining a UChicago community that they will call home for the next four years.

The first welcome will come from their College Houses, when students move into the residence halls, meet new roommates, and make new friends.

President Robert J. Zimmer, John W. Boyer, dean of the College, and other University leaders will give the students and their parents an official introduction to UChicago during the Opening Convocation. Parents and students then bid goodbye during a bagpipe processional. The older students who volunteer during O-Week will be on hand to cheer for their new classmates, through a sea of hugs and tears.

The bagpipes are back for Graduate Student Orientation, as all the incoming graduate students march to Rockefeller Chapel for their own Welcome Convocation.

Members of the Class of 2017 get their first academic lecture as College students during the Aims of Education address, a UChicago tradition. This year's speaker is Provost Thomas F. Rosenbaum, who will address the students on the benefits of a liberal arts education. The students will discuss the talk afterward in their College Houses, in colloquia led by members of the faculty.

The College will help the newcomers venture out of Hyde Park in droves during Orientation Week, for a night in downtown Chicago with their College Houses, for a day of service and activity with community organization across the South Side, and for a dinner party at the top of the John Hancock Tower. For many students, it is their first opportunity to discover more about the world-class city that is just outside their door. The Chicagoans in the group get a chance to show off some of the neighborhoods and landmarks they have known forever.

Please join us in welcoming the Class of 2017, as well as other students, faculty, and staff who are joining the University of Chicago this fall. All this week, we will use this space to share new photos from O-Week activities as they happen. You can get to know the Class of 2017 and graduate classes on UChicago’s Facebook and Instagram accounts, follow their adventures on Twitter, and share your own O-Week photos using the hashtag #oweekuchicago.

Originally published on September 22, 2013.