Move-in day at UWF

Move-in day at UWF

Friday was a day of smiles, sweat, and a few tears at the University of West Florida. Move-in day kicks off a weekend of activities before classes begin Monday.

Volunteers crowded the sidewalk outside Martin Hall, the freshman dorm. The goal on move-in day is that no student or parent has to carry anything; volunteers do it all. Many volunteers are from student groups, so incoming students get their first chance to make connections on campus.

New freshman Luis Briceno is from Fort Lauderdale.

He said, "There was a lot of guys and girls giving a hand, like 'feel free to reach out if you need help' and 'I was a freshman at one time' they told me, 'if you need help I'm always there'. It's been very nice, made me feel very welcome."

While students, and sometimes parents, work to get the dorm rooms ready, housing coordinator Romel Boiser and his team are answering a thousand questions like, "Where's the extra key?" "Where's the gym?" "What are the hours for the dining hall?"

Along with answers, they offer some encouragement.

Boiser explained, "Just making sure they know that they can get involved, honestly. That's the next big thing. They may feel as if they're just here in their hallway, but there's the whole university ahead of them."

About 40 percent of UWF students come from outside Northwest Florida, but even some locals live in residence halls for the full college experience. For Luis Briceno, that experience is starting off well.

He said, "I'm loving the school so far, I love this hall, my dorm, my roommates great so far, everybody's been very helpful. I'm very excited to start this process."

Friday night the students could take part in a late-night shopping trip to Target to purchase dorm room needs. On Sunday, a beach day is planned for some R&R before classes begin.

About 2,000 students every year live on-campus at UWF.

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