Friday, September 03, 2004

Orientation Over

On the last day of Orientation (yesterday), about seventy out of the hundred or so new students showed up for the morning Scavenger Hunt. Billed as an excercise in team building, we were split into groups of four or five and sent out to various parts to campus to gather tedius information like, "how much does printing posters cost in the basement of the architecture library?". At 10:30 am sharp we were to convene at any computer lab available, get online and take a survey. While searching for the answers to our questions, we were to keep in mind what our place was in our team, and how we dealt with "tension" in the group.

Tension? On a scavenger hunt?! I thought that part was pretty ludicrous. Incidentally, the team I was in got sent to North Campus, so we had to drive up there with the help of a student guide, and spent a good chunk of time in traffic. Despite this fact, we finished our "work" in good time, asking for the answers at various info desks and picking up flyers from the places that were closed, and after taking our survey, (which we discussed while we put in our answers because we were feeling pretty team-like by the end of it) we went and got coffee.

Returning to the central campus auditorium, we were surprised to find ourselves subject to a long and convoluted powerpoint presentation on team building skills, which really seemed silly. When asked what we had learned from the our hunting trips, people talked about discovering interesting study areas, new computer labs, or good rates at banks. I decided to act before the place became a real bore, and told the new students about the wonders of the sliding sip hole openings on the north campus coffee cups. I mean, please. Class is next week, lets keep it light.

The best part was when the speaker whipped out the results of the survey, complete with discussions of "tension" and how it was dealt with. In fact, some groups were to bent on the task of hunting they never bothered to get to know each other. I wondered how people could take this kind of activity seriously. Thankfully, many of the comments listed under tension sounded like students who were equally confused by the question. #17, was classic, discussing how tension occurred when it turned out "some of the people we had to deal with were real dicks, so we ran out of time". Classic.

In the afternoon I found out I had to pay fees, even though I have free tuition this year, so I have to pay careful attention to my online bill info. And I found out that everyone wants a Caution: Rowdy Librarian t-shirt like mine.



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