New Semester, Same Welcome

While Spring Welcome is more popular with spring admits and transfers, the events face low turnout from returning students.

NYU Spring Welcome sign in the Kimmel Center. (Staff Photo by Alina Patrick)

When LS first-year Alyssa Peyton transferred to NYU this January, she was excited yet intimidated to start at a new school during the spring semester. For Peyton, the thought of joining the Class of 2022 a semester late was daunting.

“Initially, I did worry that because I didn’t start in the fall like the majority of our class that I would have a hard time making friends or meeting people,” Peyton said.

Spring Welcome, however, helped quell Peyton’s initial worries because of the variety of events the program offered that allowed her to meet other spring transfer students.

“It was nice to go to these events and know that everyone there was a spring admit,” Peyton said. “We were all going through the same thing.”

The university offers welcome programs for the fall and spring semesters. According to Assistant Director of Welcome Programs and Class Activities Board Eena Singh, not much has changed with this year’s Spring Welcome Week compared to past years. But she feels that the program helps students, whether they are spring admits or returning students, ease into the new semester.

“I think Spring Welcome is designed in a way where we have something for students to look forward to after having a break,” Singh said. “In addition to classes, we have events that are based around wellness, academic resources and various social events that can ease the transition to the spring semester, which is often times the busiest semester for most students.”

During Fall Welcome Week, mostly first-years attend the events, while a team of over 300 Welcome Week leaders help run the events. Fewer returning students tend to visit Spring Welcome events, according to Spring Welcome Leader Kameron Mills.

“Transfer students and spring admits tend to come a lot because they are usually new to the city and they are looking for things to do and get advice,” Mills said.

Spring Welcome also offers similar events to Fall Welcome Week such as Drag Bingo, the Reality Show and Open Mic Night. Unlike Fall Welcome Week, which has over 500 events and is catered towards first-years and transfers, Spring Welcome lasts for three weeks and is open to all students. 

“[Spring Welcome] is not just the first week, and I think people get confused about that,” said Mills. “It goes on for three whole weeks, and it’s for everyone.”

While Welcome Week helps some students ease into the semester, some returning students do not participate in any of the events. LS returning first-year Vivek Sharma felt as if it was unnecessary for him to visit Spring Welcome events.

“I don’t feel like I need to be welcomed back,” Sharma said. “The only point in [the Welcome events] is to meet people when you’re new, but I already have my friends and I’m settled.”

Despite the lack of popularity Spring Welcome has with returning students, Peyton believed that Spring Welcome fostered a sense of community among the spring admits.

“[Spring Welcome] helped bond the spring admits together and created a community between us that I don’t think otherwise would have existed,” Peyton said. 

Correction Feb. 4: A previous version of this article incorrectly called Eena Singh the Associate Director of Welcome Programs and Class Activities Board. Her title is actually Assistant Director of Welcome Programs and Class Activities Board. The article has been updated to reflect the correction.

Additional reporting by Meghna Maharishi.

A version of this article appeared in the Monday, Feb. 4 print edition. Email Tatiana Velasco at [email protected].

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