The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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AARO marks start for Centennial Class

It’s getting close to the end of June, and for the SMU community this means that AARO is set to begin. AARO, which stands for Academic Advising, Registration, and Orientation, is SMU’s way of introducing incoming freshmen and transfer students to the SMU community.

“We really hope that they go away with a comfort with the community they are about to engage in both academically and socially,” said Ashley Stone, director of New Student Orientation and Student Support.

Stone has been preparing for this year’s round of AARO sessions since last August when last year’s Mustang Corral came to a close, she said. She has planned 11 separate sessions in total, each with about 130 members of the new SMU class.

Students at AARO are all broken up into small groups for many of its activities, and they’re assigned a student group leader to guide them through the process of orientation. Students will also meet with their advisors to plan their schedules, take placement exams for math and foreign languages and participate in ice-breaking activities with their small group.

Stone said that this year students can expect a more streamlined process. Based on last year’s student evaluations of the program, the first day of AARO has been shortened by one hour to accommodate students who may have had a lengthy travel to get to SMU. Additionally, many of the programs have been switched to, or are now accompanied by, informational packets.

“It’s hard to remember all of the information we throw at them during this process, so we wanted to make sure they materials to look back on after they leave our program,” Stone said.

During AARO, first-year SMU students will spend their two days at AARO living in Boaz Hall, one of the university’s first-year only residence halls.

Transfer student AARO will not include an overnight stay, because SMU wanted to take into consideration these student’s busy schedules.

“Transfer students don’t need to learn the skills necessary to transition to college because they have already done it,” said Stone. “Instead, we focus on how SMU might be different from their other institution.”

Parents of students are also welcomed at AARO. They’ll attend many of the same assemblies as their students, but they’ll also get to go to sessions of their own where they can get their own questions answered.

 

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