Meet the 2014 Pre-Orientation Assistants
Posted on May 13, 2013
Three years ago, I came to Wheaton and the U.S. for the first time as an international student. This coming August, I will be a senior, marking the last year of college. To all the bright incoming first-years, college does fly by, so a big welcome and I hope you’ll make the best of your time here! Besides classes, I was the treasurer of Wheaton for Cambodia. I also had a great time with Café Theatre, and I like getting off campus on adventures with Outdoors Club. I had my own ups and downs throughout my journey at Wheaton, but what I remember most are the wonderful encounters with some great people who helped shape my experience here: adjusting to and calling Wheaton my second home, struggling to choose majors, studying abroad-abroad in France, for example. I have grown a lot in the past three years, and part of my learning happens at the Marshall Center, a very welcoming place where I participated in Between the Lines dialogue and served as a student worker. Last year, I was a Pre-orientation Assistant and I had a short but great time getting to know a group of talented students coming from diverse backgrounds. Wonderful energy! I am looking forward to meeting new first-years this fall.
I was born in Senegal, West Africa. I came to the United States at the age of four living in New York City with my parents. I see myself as an open-minded person who is accepting of all cultures and beliefs. One of the main reasons why I became an Orientation Assistant is because I have benefited tremendously from the Intercultural Orientation and the Marshall center. The Marshall Center has prepared me to have a successful academic and social experience at Wheaton College. Another reason why I want to help out with Pre-Orientation is because I wish to have the same positive influence on the incoming freshmen. My involvement with the clubs at Wheaton College can be accredited to the Orientation Assistants of the Marshall Center and how they have prepared me to take on leadership roles to benefit the Wheaton community as a whole. This is an amazing Orientation and the topics discussed will not only make your experience at Wheaton College a wonderful one, but it will also enable you to push yourself into bigger and greater horizons.
When I was a freshman, I participated in the Intercultural Pre-Orientation. It was not only a place I could meet other freshman, it was also a great opportunity to meet older students who would later become my social and academic mentors. As a freshman, I did not realize the immense benefit of having such an experience, as well as having the Marshall Center as a resource on campus. However, now that I have been at Wheaton three years, I appreciate the support I received from the Marshall Center and its programs. They have encouraged me to embrace my racial identity, sexuality and learn so much of my academic and leadership potential. Coming full circle, as a senior at Wheaton, I want to give back to the Center for all they have done for me, as well as provide the incoming freshman with the support I was given when I first came to Wheaton.
I chose to be an OA because I really enjoyed being one for last year's Pre-Orientation. I got the chance to meet the incoming class and help them feel comfortable in their new environment. From attending Pre-Orientation my freshman year, I made great connections with my OAs, and they continued to help me through out the year and I really like that so I decided I wanted to do the same as well. I also wanted to get to know the upcoming freshman class so if they needed anything I would be able to help. Attending Pre-Orientation really benefited me because I met many people who I now have great relationships with; I strongly advise you to be open to activities and events on campus and try to meet as many people as you can because you never know, later on they might be the ones to help you out and get you connections.
Moya Willis ‘15
Hometown: Bronx. NY
Congratulations on your acceptance to Wheaton! Yesterday when I was a freshman (it really feels like just yesterday), I was so nervous to leave my home in the big city for the small school in Norton. Now, three years later and Wheaton is truly a second home. This community is ever changing and when you think you figured it all out, it changes. As you go through these next four years you will learn that the people that surround you will greatly influence how you adapt to the changes. I am so grateful for the many incredible relationships I have made here. The staff from the Marshall Center has been an integral part of my Wheaton experience. They are always there to help you to thrive personally and academically. Do not be afraid to reach out and ask for help when needed. This past semester, I was involved in the Intergroup Dialogue where I got to engage in meaningful discussions with students whom I would not have interacted with otherwise. Additionally, I have been involved with various intercultural and community service clubs on campus. As a senior, I have taken away that happiness is a active pursuit. You will be very happy at Wheaton if you actively seek out opportunities inside and outside of the classroom. I look forward to meeting you all.
I chose to be an Orientation Advisor because I attended the Marshall Center's Pre-Orientation and it was the best way that I could have started off my college career. I got to know a smaller group of my peers before everyone else got to campus. My advisors were really great and made me feel comfortable with everything that I was feeling at orientation and I want to be that support system for the incoming class. The Marshall Center holds great and helpful events that guide you through your first year of college. It is a great, comfortable environment for Wheaton students and a great place to seek counsel or if you just want a hug! My favorite thing about Wheaton is that I can walk around campus and not know everyone but their face is familiar. I am a member and Co-Director of TRYBE, Wheaton's only Multicultural dance group. We dance at a lot of events throughout the year and also have our own show in the Spring semester. Being a part of TRYBE and other clubs has formed my experience at Wheaton and I would not change one thing.
I am a part of the Class of 2017 and a Posse scholar. At the moment I am planning to declare a major in Business and Management with a minor in Sociology. I spend most of my time at home in Queens, NY when I'm not at Wheaton. On campus, I am a member of the Men’s Rugby Club, and play the position of wing. I also co-facilitate group dialogues at the Marshall Center, the most recent was focused on gender. I enjoy good food and good music and can be often found chilling in the Dimple on sunny days.