Posts tagged ‘move-in day’

Inside Our November/December 2017 Issue

You may have come from thousands of miles away, or from the nearest town over, but nothing quite compares to arriving on campus for the first time. Whether you were nervous to meet your roommate, excited to be on your own, or sad saying goodbye to family and friends, most of us probably remember that day.

We wanted to see what incoming students today thought of the experience, so we sent photographers to five Penn State campuses on arrival weekend to get up close with students—new and returning—and capture them in their element: suitcases, boxes, duffel bags, and lots of cheap plastic storage bins. The feature begins on p. 28.

Also inside, we take you back to a time of great transition and tension in the world, and particularly on campus, as the college transitioned into a military training camp during World War I. The story is told through the love letters between Norman Lake ’22 and Helen Gladys Keller, his then-girlfriend whom he would later marry. Their story begins on p. 40.

And you’ll meet David Titley ’80, a retired Navy admiral and atmospheric expert who has become a prominent voice on climate change as a national security threat.

Plus we’ll take you to the scene of the first away pregame tailgate, hosted by the Alumni Association, and introduce you to Denis Smirnov, the Russian hockey phenom who turned down the chance to play in a top Russian pro league and the NHL to play for the Nittany Lions.

Our Nov./Dec. 2017 issue should be arriving in mailboxes soon. Let us know what you think at

B.J. Reyes, associate editor

October 25, 2017 at 11:18 am 2 comments

Welcome Back

I was mowing my lawn Saturday afternoon when a couple drove by and slowed in front of my house. The driver finally stopped and rolled down his window, so I paused my mowing and said hello. He asked if my neighbors — a retired engineering professor and his wife who’ve lived in the neighborhood since before I was born — still lived in the house next door. I told him they did.

“Wow,” he said. “Thirty years ago, I lived in their basement.”

Saturday was Move-In Day, which we locals know best as the day you don’t go near the local big-box stores unless absolutely necessary. But for folks like these, it’s something more: An alum (whose name I didn’t catch, unfortunately; they were trying to get back on the road, and I was trying to finish my lawn before the rain came) back in town dropping off his daughter for her first day of college, reminiscing over the improvised housing arrangement from his own undergraduate days. It was a cool moment.

Did I mention today’s the first day of the fall semester? Welcome back, everybody.

Ryan Jones, senior editor

August 23, 2010 at 8:58 am Leave a comment

Happy Valley Gets Ready for Move-In Day(s)

We’ve just (finally) finished our Sept./Oct. issue, which Alumni Association members will receive at the end of this month. The cover story is a collection of reader memories from their first days on campus — the “Move-In Day” experiences shared by Penn Staters of every campus and era. The timing of this story is no accident, of course, as those of us working at University Park are about to be reminded. Cars full of students, parents, luggage, furniture and who knows what else will be clogging State College in the next few days, hitting a peak this weekend. While those of us who live here may not be looking forward to the traffic (and will avoid the local big-box stores like the plague), the Centre Daily Times reminds us that business owners are understandably psyched. As one local manager says, “It’s kind of like Black Friday morning — only five times as busy, and it’s all day long.”


Ryan Jones, senior editor

August 18, 2009 at 1:42 pm Leave a comment

Do You Remember Your First Day at Penn State?


Greg Grieco/Penn State Public Information

I’m talking about your very first day as a Penn State student. We’re looking for stories that we might print in The Penn Stater as part of a collection of readers’ tales of arrival day.

The idea came from a conversation I had at an Alumni Council dinner a few years back with an alumna who was reminiscing about her first day. Her parents drove her up from Maryland, I think it was, and she cried pretty much the whole way up. She spent most of that first day holed up in her dorm room, homesick, until a couple of dorm-mates befriended her and got her out to some activities, and suddenly everything looked a lot better.

So, what do you remember about your first day as a Penn State student? Whatever the campus—whether it was University Park or another campus—we’d love to hear your story. Give us your memories of packing your belongings at home … driving … unpacking … saying goodbye to Mom and Dad … getting lost on campus … making your first Penn State friends.

Write your story—no more than 300 words, please—and send it to us by e-mail (, fax (814-863-5690), or mail (Hintz Family Alumni Center, University Park, PA 16802). We’re hoping to print the best tales in our September-October issue.

Tina Hay, editor

April 17, 2009 at 11:51 am 2 comments

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