Destination Kent State: Here at last

Stephanie Neumann

The Student Center resonated with excitement as Destination Kent State got underway for incoming freshmen students.

The Student Center resonated with excitement as Destination Kent State got underway for incoming freshmen students.

DKS is Kent State’s new freshmen summer orientation program. Currently in its second year of operation, DKS replaced the old PASS program that existing students might remember from their freshman year.

DKS sees about 160 students and their families arrive for every day-and-a-half session. Students are divided into groups based on their major so they can meet other students they will likely see once classes begin. Each student has a full schedule of activities that introduces them to the university. Previously, the PASS program brought random groups of students to campus to take placement tests and schedule classes.

“Both students and their parents have the opportunity to learn quite a lot about the university,” Randi Schneider, associate director for Student Success Programs, said.

Schneider said DKS is beneficial to students because they get to visit the campus and can acquaint themselves with the resources and services available to them. DKS presents students with information ranging from their major to Residence Services and everything in between.

Taylor Schnur, incoming freshman interior design major, said she liked the idea of coming to campus to get ready for the fall.

“I’m excited for a new environment,” Schnur said.

Schnur said she thinks being an active student makes college a better experience and the DKS program is showing her what Kent State has to offer. She said it’s now up to her to act on those opportunities.

Schnur said although she is excited, she is worried about new college experiences like sharing a bathroom with all of the other residents on her floor. She said staying in a residence hall over night and meeting other students has eased a lot of her fears.

FlashGuides play a big role in helping freshmen learn about Kent State. They travel with the students as they participate in various activities in order to show them where to go and answer any questions that may come up.

“Basically, I am a wealth of knowledge,” Joseph Arriaga, junior justice studies major said.

Arriaga was a FlashGuide last year. He said he thinks the incoming freshmen really connect with the FlashGuides by asking questions about Kent State.

“We want them to be comfortable,” Schneider said.

DKS’ mission is to ensure students know and feel like they fit in here, making the adjustment period during the first semester less stressful.

“The most critical thing is to help people make a connection,” Schneider said.

Contact student life reporter Stephanie Neumann at [email protected].