University Hall shown from the side view

New Student, Orientation and Transition Programs

New Student Center

As one of the three programmatic elements of New Student, Orientation and Transition Programs (NSOTP), the New Student Center (NSC) provides a welcoming location for new students to gather, connect with each other and peer mentors and receive information about campus services and programs.

The New Student Center is located in the Bell Tower in room 1548, a prominent and commuter-accessible location. The NSC is staffed by trained Peer Mentors who seek to make both individual connections with students as well as facilitate small group interaction.  As a result of his study, Astin (1993) found that a student’s peer group is the most powerful influence on growth and development during the undergraduate years.  The peer groups that the student most strongly identifies and most often and intensely interacts with will have the greatest impact. 

Peer Mentors plan social events to attract students into the NSC, facilitate a connection between themselves and their mentors and facilitate peer group interaction.  Peer Mentors also plan curricular events such as speech practice sessions and group study sessions to assist with the transition into CI’s academic life.  After all, the better a student does academically, the more likely he/she is to stay in school.  Ishitani and DesJardins (2002) found that as a student’s grade point average increased, the likeliness for drop-out decreased. 

Dolphin-to-Dolphin Discussions
Peer Mentors conduct Dolphin-to-Dolphin discussions with first-time freshmen to discuss goal setting, transition concerns, and answer questions in the fall and spring semester.

Peer Mentors plan and facilitate social and academic events throughout the fall and spring semesters.  Previous NSC events include a Cookie Craze Convention, Making Memories Workshop, Groovy Game Night, Schedule Building, Finals Preparation and Speech Practice.

Personal Academic Record (P.A.R.) Card Program
Peer Mentors implement the Personal Academic Record (P.A.R.) Card program.  First-year students are invited to pick up a P.A.R. card during the first three weeks of school from the NSC and document their target grade point average (must be above average).  The NSC will maintain a record of the goals and will recognize students who achieved P.A.R. upon completion of the first semester.