Week One: Welcome to SLU!

By Luis H. Garay

When I think about my first week at Saint Louis University as a #sapro the above really comes to mind, “Welcome to SLU!”

Last week marked my first week at this institution and after a weekend of much moving, I jumped into the first day of work. Monday was a half day of new hire orientation and the rest of that day I settled into my new office. Because I started my first day (August 18th)  the week before classes started (August 25th), it felt a little weird to be settling in my office while my co-workers carried out their work. I had to remind myself (even still), “This is your day one. Take it slow”.

Take it slow.
It’s okay to still be figuring it out.

Both of these phrases I heard from both professionals here and friends when I explained that I felt like I should know more in the first week. Both friends in this field and outside of it in their first jobs too said it takes time to really understand all the components of one’s work. Through these conversations, I decided to be a little easier on myself.

When I read this post down the road I want to remember the following about my first week:

Welcoming: From students to staff, all were welcoming. I heard “We are glad you here” to “Thank you for choosing us” from many. This kind of welcome and positive energy is infectious.

Nervous: When meeting someone for the first time and they say “I hear you are a go-getter” or “I was told all about your amazing accomplishments,” I got a little nervous and started to feel a little pressure.

Genuinely Excited: One student who I met during my on-campus interview and will be working with in an advising capacity stopped by my office at the end of the week. He said the following and it will always stick with me, “I am genuinely excited you are here.”

Inspired:  I was able to participate in Fall Welcome events last week. This showed me more about the campus culture and the function of the office I work for. I attended an orientation for a scholarship program, a reception for new students of color, and the annual convocation. Through all these events I had discussions with wonderful students, staff, and faculty who are committed to diversity and inclusion. This type of commitment inspires me to be the best professional I can be.

I wish all a happy new academic year! 

As always, thanks for reading! Comment below or tweet me at @LuisHGaray with your thoughts.

Student Affairs - the First Years

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