Orientation Team

2014 Orientation Coordinators

Alan Ratermann, Helen Schultz, Claire Minnick, Alex Schelble, Maggie Beacom, Katie Robertson, Nick Blair, Peter SoukenikOrientation Coordinators are charged with the planning, programming and implementation of the orientation program under direction of the Director of Student Life. Each Coordinator has several responsibilities regarding the entire orientation process from training of the leaders to the final closing candlelight ceremony. The following Orientation Coordinators were selected by the Student Life Office during the fall semester through an application, recommendation and interview process. In addition they utilized the semester to begin the initial phases of the planning process. Welcome to RU! We look forward to meeting you at orientation and please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions.

Alan Ratermann, Class of '15, English, Theology & Nonprofit Leadership Studies Major

Rockhurst personifies the word community. The students, faculty, and staff are very devoted to helping each other become better men and women for and with others. 

Helen Schultz, Class of ’15, Elementary Education and Theology Major

My favorite Orientation memory is the slip n' slide with the other leaders and coordinators after Olympics.

Rockhurst is special to me because I love walking around campus and seeing so many friends, faculty, and staff that I know. The conversations I have with these people and the bonds that we form make Rockhurst my home

Claire Minnick, Class of  '16, Nursing & Spanish Major 

Playing guitar and singing at the Candlelight ceremony and taking part in the Finucane Service Project while exploring KC are two of my favorite Orientation Memories.

Rockhurst is special to me because of the values it instills in every one of its Hawks. Our mission is prevalent around campus and everyone gets to take part in living it. I am forever grateful for the woman Rockhurst is shaping me to be, and for the people who allow me to grow in faith and love.  

Alex Schelble, Class of  '15, Biochemistry Major

Each year with orientation has been so blessed and given me so many great memories. As a new student, I met one of my current best friends/roommates at the Finucane project, and that was the first time I felt at home here. As a leader and coordinator, my favorite memories have been getting to know new students and seeing them grow throughout the process, as well as becoming part of this amazing orientation community.

 Rockhurst is special to me because it has given me the opportunities to grow as a person and become part of something bigger. This is my home away from home, and the people at this school are a second family. 

Maggie Beacom, Class of  '15,

I wish every new student would walk into college and know that everyone is in the same place as you. Although some students may seem to be making a friend circle faster than others, everything plays out how it's supposed to and finding your college friend circle is an amazing adventure. 

What I love about Rockhurst is that it is so easy to get to know people from all different corners of campus and the variety of friends made throughout the years. 

Katie Robertson,  Class of ‘16, Exercise and Sport Science and Physics of Medicine Major

My favorite orientation memory was meeting my orientation leader Alex Schelble for the first time and gaining friendships through my team that I still have today. It has been a great experience to see orientation not only as a freshman, but also as a leader, and I am looking forward to the view as a coordinator!

Rockhurst is special to me because it is more than just a school; it’s a family that keeps me accountable and more intentional in all of my actions.

Nick Blair, Class of ’16 Accounting, Corporate Finance, and Management Major

My favorite Orientation memory occurred last year, during the Finucane Service Project.  My team was fortunate enough to be able to work with a local neighborhood association passing out information sheets to all the residents within their boundaries.  For the first time during my Rockhurst experience I had the opportunity to meet a large group of my Kansas City neighbors and listen to their stories as well as share mine.

Rockhurst has given me so many opportunities to better myself academically, socially, spiritually, and in leadership skills.  What makes Rockhurst special, however, is that I am able to show my gratitude by getting involved and giving back to campus.  A byproduct of getting involved is self-improvement.  The generous spirit of the Rockhurst campus, students, and staff creates an endless cycle of easily accessible growth that thousands of students have already experienced and will continue to experience for years to come.

Peter Soukenik, Class of ’16 Accounting and Political Science Major 

My favorite orientation memory is always the battle of the blue soccer game when Rockhurst Hawks usually defeats the D1 UMKC Kangaroos! 

Rockhurst has become a place where I have learned to be myself and break out of my comfort zone. 

2014 Logistic Coordinators

Logistic Coordinators are the glue that binds all pieces of orientation together.  They are the behind the scenes leaders during the week before orientation and during the orientation process to assist the leaders, coordinators and Director of Student Life with tasks that are imperative to ensure the events flow easily.  They are selected through an application process and their time commitment is the week before and week of Orientation.

Carolina Cruz, Marium Choudhry, Chris D’Silva, Rachel Pearson, & Neil Smith

Logistic Coordinator Chris (in the middle)

"My advice to new students is to get involved, branch out, do your thing, but leave some free time to just hang out with your friends... don't worry, you'll make at least one!"

Logistic Coordinator Rachel

"As a new student I wish I would have known that the first semester of your freshmen year really sets you up for the rest of your four years. Jump into anything that you can and meet people that you normally wouldn't talk to. Rockhurst is a small campus and if you don't branch out, you're going to miss all of the amazing things that this campus has to offer."

Logistic Coordinator Carolina (on the left)

"It's okay to change throughout your freshman year.  You may realize that the friends you had the first week at RU may not be the same the last week of your freshman year.  You will grow a lot throughout the year so be open to change!"

Logistic Coordinator Marium (on the left)

"My advice to new students is to just be you!!!"

Logistic Coordinator Neil

"As a new student I was nervous about...... what wasn't I worried about? I feel like I was nervous about everything."

2014 Orientation Leaders

Orientation Leaders are selected each Spring to help implement the orientation program. All current RU students are eligible to apply. Leaders participate in training programs to prepare them for small group leadership, educate them on RU facts and incoming student questions, as well as provide them with an understanding of effective group facilitation. Orientation is a four-day, three night on-campus program that introduces the new students to academic life, spirit and traditions and allows the opportunity to meet other incoming students, faculty, staff, and student leaders. 

Team 1 Carmelita

"My advice to new students is to not be afraid of who you are. It's a new school and a new place but that doesn't mean you have to change who you are. If you love to dance in random places then by all means dance! If you love talking to people then please talk! Those are the people that make Rockhurst such an awesome place."

Team 1 Ryan

"As a new student I wish I would have known how participating in beginning of the year activities, such as Orientation would be the best way of meeting new people. You are able to be on a team of around 25 of your other classmates and also get to know others through fun activities throughout the week."

Team 2 Mary

"I wish I would've known that maturity comes from being able to say no, not from experiencing everything."

Team 2 Nick

"As a new student I was most nervous about meeting new friends. Just be yourself and start conversations with people. It gets very easy over time."

Team 3 Anne

"When I was new I was most nervous about my classes. I wasn't sure how I would adjust to college classes, but I soon realized that my high school prepared me very well for college."

Team 3 Michael

"As a new student, I wish I would have known about the tutors that are always available in the Learning Center. I did not take advantage of that opportunity until the very end of the year and it really helped me for finals and papers. I will be sure to go to the Learning Center more in the future because they are a great help!?"

Team 4 Erika

"What I love most about Rockhurst is that they genuinely care about the students. They are always looking to improve and change stuff around campus to fit the needs and wants of students."

Team 4 Mitch

"I wish I would've known that everybody else was just as nervous as I was. Freshman year is an amazing year but so many new students are too nervous to get out of their comfort zone and miss out on some great memories."

Team 5 Kyle

"When I was new I wish I would've known how great it is to hang out in the Fishbowl for hours on end."

Team 5 Sarah

"My advice is that it's okay to feel out of your comfort zone for a while, that's where all of the magic happens."

Team 6 Casey

"As a new student I wish I would have embraced the first month at Rockhurst more. I think I focused too much on being homesick and didn't take advantage of meeting new people as much as I should have."

Team 6 Sam

"If I could give advice to all new students it would be to come into orientation and college with an open mind, and strive to make relationships with people outside of your friend groups. Keep your door open when you are in your room and try to meet everyone in your hall. Most importantly, be yourself!"

Team 7 Meagan

"My advice to all new students is to jump out of your comfort zone! Orientation is prime time to meet so many new people. Take advantage of this time when everyone is trying to make friends and stay afloat just like you."

Team 7 Scott

"What did I bring that I never used: Clothes, clothes, and clothes. I over packed and kept tons of clothes and shoes that I never wore."

Team 8 Julianne

"As a new student I wish I known to take advantage of the resources and help the school offered me - like my RA and Student Life"

Team 8 Kevin

"I really love the close-knit community and the size of Rockhurst. Because of its size, it's incredibly easy to get to know many people of all ages around campus, which really helps you become comfortable very quickly at the school. I also see a great community at this school not only in the student body but also in the faculty, staff, and Jesuit residents. The upperclassmen provide an excellent example to follow on campus and the faculty and staff are always extremely helpful when needed. The Jesuits (especially Father Curran) are always around campus wanting to talk to students and get to know them."

Team 9 Connor

"What I brought to the Rock but never used was my X-Box. It really is not necessary because there are a lot of things around campus to get involved with and do."

Team 9 Naomi

"My biggest fear coming to college was making friends. I had a few people from high school here, but I wanted to branch out and meet new people. I'm really shy in new situations, so I was very nervous about coming into a whole new environment and making friends. In my head, I imagined it being instantaneous; I would get to orientation and meet all my new friends. However, be aware that it can happen instantaneously for some people, but for others, it does take some time to find your good friends. If this is your biggest fear, don't let it be, I promise your friends will come!"

Team 10 Taylor

"Advice to new students- Use all of your resources when it comes to academics because ultimately, everyone here wants to see you succeed. If you're struggling with a subject, don't be afraid or ashamed to ask your SI or teacher for help. It even helps when you become good friends with someone in your class so you can use each other as study tools. Ultimately, NEVER BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP!!"

Team 10 Kevin

"What I love about Rockhurst is the small school feel it has, everyone is so welcoming and friendly. You see people all over campus and you see them on a regular basis. I also like the smaller classrooms because you can form a more personal relationship with teachers."

Team 11 Derek

"My advice to new students is to tell you that college is a new chapter in life that has a huge impact on setting yourself up for the rest of your life. You'll go through ups and downs, but everything is worth the struggle in the end. Express yourself by meeting new people and become involved in organizations around campus. Continue to create goals for yourself not only in the classroom, but also for the person you want to become in the future. College is supposed to be the best years of your life, so make it that way!"

Team 11 Allie

"As a new student I was most nervous about not being able to meet anyone. I came into school not knowing anyone. Everyone at Rockhurst is so accepting and friendly. It doesn't matter what year people are or if they are involved in organizations that differ from your own. For the most part, everyone wants to get to know you. Remember that all the new students are in the same boat and are looking to meet new people too. Don't be shy."

Team 12 Matt

"I love being able to look around and knowing that Rockhurst is my home. This is my family and these are the people who I will live with the rest of my adult life."

Team 12 Marija

"Like many other students, coming into Rockhurst University I was most nervous about whether or not I would be able to find a new "group of friends". It was the first time I was separated from the friend group I had had since elementary school. I thought that since I was commuting and not living on campus it would hinder my ability to make friends, but I was very wrong. My advice would be to take FULL advantage of all the first couple weeks of college has to offer. From orientation, social mentors, activities fair, and much more! Introduce yourself to as many people as you can, because everyone is in the same boat as you. It's nice to have many faces to say hi to on campus during the day. In college, you will find your small group of friends but you are not by any means limited to them. You will learn that Rockhurst is such a welcoming community and family."

Team 13 Gracy

"As a new student I wish I would've known that other new students were experiencing the same things as me. I thought I was the only one home sick or nervous, but everyone is freaking out so you're not alone!"

Team 13 Jack

"What did I bring but never used.... a fan."

Team 14 Mary

"The advice I'd give to new students is to not to stress about making friends immediately. They will come naturally and more than likely the friends you initially make will not be the same ones that you are closest to at the end of the year. Everyone is scared they will be left behind and no one will like them but there are friends on campus for everyone and they will be drawn to you. So take a breath and let it happen."

Team 14 Austin

"I love the sense of community at Rockhurst. It is so clear that there are many people the care about you and who want to see you succeed."

Team 15 Will

"I brought a desk lamp for late night studying that I never used. But I learned that if I'm up that late to study it was better to go to the library because I could concentrate better."

Team 15 Jamie

"As a new student I wish I would've realized that this will be my last time as a freshman. It is okay to be uncomfortable and try new things."

Team 16 Emma

"My advice to new students is that your college years are the greatest years of your life, and they are the hardest. You also grow and change the most. These four years are a part of you, but you do not have to become them. Rockhurst will soon become your new home, welcome it with open arms. Remember that you matter. You are important. Treat yourself with respect- your body, your dignity, your education, your saving grace. Treat others around with respect too- if they are important to you, they deserve it. Don't be afraid to let go. Don't be afraid to say no, but pay attention to new opportunities. Don't be afraid to say yes." "Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better" -Maya Angelou

Team 16 Peter

"There are many things I wish I would've known but the top thing I wish I would've known would have to be to take it day by day and don't be too cool for anything. Whether it be playing video games for hours on end in the residence halls or playing a game of pickup soccer on the turf, make sure to put yourself out there because people will notice you."

Team 17 Stevie

"As a new student I wish I would have known to not be so nervous to go up and talk to someone! It is such a small campus that you're going to end up becoming friends with them anyway!"

Team 17 Connor

"My advice to new students is to find your niche. The first semester was really stressful for me because I didn't quite know where I fit best, but give it time. You'll love the Nest."

Team 18 Olivia

"What I love most about Rockhurst is the community and support that every hawk has!"

Team 18 Andrew

"As a new student, I was nervous about ways to get involved. I was very involved with my high school class, and wondered if it would be as easy to get involved at Rockhurst. I would tell new students not to worry about involvement, as there are plenty opportunities."