Welcome days ahead at NIU

Will Rhode, freshman computer and design tech major, eats a slice of pizza at the Huskie Bash at Huskie Stadium on Thursday afternoon.

By Matthew Frierdich

DeKALB | Even with the beginning of a new school year, some things never change.

The image of confused freshmen carrying boxes followed by crying parents can be seen every fall.

In order for new students to feel more comfortable acclimating to their school, NIU hosts Welcome Days, a weeklong series of events hosted by different offices and organizations on campus.

Welcome Days kicked off on Move-In Day Thursday and continued through the weekend. Events continue today and run through Wednesday.

Events are aimed at first semester students but are open to all students.

One of the biggest Welcome Days events was the 15th annual Huskie Bash on Thursday. The celebration, hosted by Housing & Dining, featured stands showcasing businesses local to the DeKalb/Sycamore area, including a number of restaurants.

“We really wanted to help introduce the new students to local companies, restaurants, retail stores and help them get used to the city, while letting vendors get experience as well,” said Michael Stang, executive director of Housing & Dining. “It’s not only for the students but it’s also for the parents too because it lets the families have one last event together before they say goodbye.”

The Huskie Bash can also be helpful for roommates to get a chance to hang out with each other for the first time and meet new people, Stang said.

Many new students spent their afternoon walking around the Huskie Bash getting used to some of the new sights and sounds in the DeKalb area.

“There was a lot of information and a lot of booths,” said freshman Mark Bergsohn. “But I love the campus, so it’s fun walking around and seeing everything.”

Off-Campus and Non-Traditional Student Services hosted “Commuter Connections Day” on Thursday in the Holmes Student Center, an event aimed at students who commute.

“The event was good to be able to show commuters what kind of resources NIU has to offer for non-traditional students,” said freshman John Bauer-Buis. “It was very helpful.”

Other events on Thursday included a late night shopping trip to Target, hosted by Orientation and First Year Experience.

Today, the Newman Catholic Center will host a Welcome Back BBQ from 6-8 p.m., which will include outdoor games.

Tuesday will be host to the Carnival Chillaration Extravaganza, from noon to 3 p.m. at the Women’s Resource Center. Sorority recruitment will also begin at 7 p.m. in the Recency Room of the Holmes Student Center, hosted by the Panhellenic Council. In addition, the Northern Illinois Players will hold an open mic night at 7 p.m. in Caven Auditorium in Gabel Hall.

Welcome Days wraps up on Wednesday with an open house in the Campus Life Building from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Student Association will also host a Go Student Leaders Event from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Stevenson Hall Multipurpose Room.