June 26, 2017
Communications and Marketing
Several dozen incoming first-year students will get a head start on making friends and becoming acquainted with the Saint Anselm College community, thanks to a pre-orientation program known as Passages. Offered by the Student Activities and Leadership Programs office, four "adventure leadership" trips will visit the Champlain region of Vermont, Maine's Acadia National Park, Gettysburg in Pennsylvania, and the Adirondack Mountains of New York.
"The Passages program is designed to encourage a smooth transition to the college experience through activities that challenge students and empower growth," says Jean Couture, director of Student Activities and Leadership Programs. "Participants spend time learning and having fun in unique locations, while cultivating strong new relationships with new friends and mentors as they explore what it means to be Anselmian."
The four trips will depart from campus mid-July through early August, guided by upperclassmen student-leaders and a faculty or staff member.
Matt Sargent '18 was a participant on the Adirondacks trip as an incoming freshman. This year, he will lead the trip to Acadia with two other students and Father Anselm Smedile, O.S.B.
"Passages is one of my favorite activities at Saint Anselm," Sargent said. "The experience I had on my trip really prepared me for a lot of the new situations I found myself in as a first year college student. I am looking forward to sharing an awesome trip with my participants this summer, and being one of the first to welcome them to their new home on the Hilltop."
Those participating in the Acadia trip (July 24-28) will explore coastal Maine's National Park from a campsite within walking distance of the ocean. The group will visit two certified organic farms, engaging in a day of education to better understand how food is cultivated, and return to campus with an appreciation for the protected lands of our National Parks.
The Gettysburg trip (August 1-5) engages emerging leaders, historians, and trivia buffs through visits to historical Civil War battlefields. Based out of a retreat center located near the Appalachian Trail, participants will analyze the effects and causes of conflict, glimpse leadership demonstrated on the battlefield, learn of the acts of heroism, and experience the spirituality and ethos of the area.
In the Adirondacks (August 4-8), students will gain historical knowledge, understanding of environmental issues, and outdoor leadership, as they explore the 6.1 million acre Adirondack Park. Participants will stay in lakeside cabins and visit the high peaks region, hike, canoe, swim, and challenge themselves with a treetop ropes course.
Registration for the three trips remains open, with limited availability.
The first trip of the summer, Champlain (July 17-21), is currently building a waitlist, due to high demand. Those who secure a spot on this popular trip will experience a blend of service, adventure, culture, and spirituality near Vermont's largest lake, as they spend a day serving in a local community and cross the border to Montreal, visiting the city's historic cathedrals and other landmarks.
Questions about the Passages program can be directed to the Office of Student Activities and Leadership Programs.
The Class of 2021 arrives on campus for New Student Orientation on Thursday, August 24.
Story by Cory True '09