Sustainability Sale Canceled
On Aug. 29, 2023, the Office of Sustainability announced that their annual sustainability sale, popular among sibs on campus for purchase of refrigerators, lamps, mirrors, and other dorm essentials, would be canceled for fall 2023. In their announcement, they reported that the reason for this cancellation was, “unusually high contamination rates of donation items and other extenuating circumstances.” When students asked what the items were contaminated with, the Office of Sustainability responded with, “The bin was contaminated with a higher than normal number of materials that were not in the accepted donations list, including used toiletries and food, and due to the Office of Sustainability being unfilled, we did not have the capacity to sort through all the materials. There will be a higher focus on communication and outreach so this isn’t repeated next year.” The sustainability sale will return next year, but in the meantime, other resources for sustainable items include the Wellesley Free and For Sale Facebook page, other Facebook marketplace groups, and the Wellesley Students’ Aid resource racks and clothes closet.
Convocation and Stepsinging 2023
Wellesley College started the academic year with its 149th Convocation on Tuesday, Sept. 5. The tradition included faculty, staff and students, with each class dressed in their class colors and seniors in their graduation robes. College President Paula Johnson, Provost and Dean of the College Andy Shennan, along with student speakers Ingrid Bell ’24, president of the College Government, and Dhanya Srikanth ’24, chief justice, gave speeches to the community. A recording of the celebration can be found on the Wellesley College website. Following Convocation, the Wellesley College Alumnae Association led Stepsinging, the annual tradition where students chant and sing traditional class cheers in a competition.
Along with Convocation, students were welcomed to the school year with a blistering heat wave. Temperatures reached from the upper 80s to the high 90s. Rooms in residential halls were especially hot, given that most dorms only have one window. Students were encouraged by residential life and Sheilah Shaw Horton, vice president and dean of students, to take advantage of cooler spaces around campus, including hall lounges and the campus center and to drink plenty of fluids. Now that the weather is cooling down, students are no longer allowed to stay overnight in the campus center.
Orientation and First-Year Move-In
The start of the 2023-24 orientation programs began with virtual orientation from July 24 to Aug. 25 and first-year move-in, beginning with international students and those in sports in late August and domestic student move-in on Wednesday, Aug. 30. During the next five days, first-year students were introduced to the campus with a number of events, including campus tours, campus resource fairs, faculty panels, academic fairs and fun events. First-year students were required to go to certain mandatory events, including an all hall gathering, a “Keeping-Wellesley-Safe” program, an violence prevention event, a stress management session, “Let Me Speak,” and substance use harm reduction training. Students also completed their course registration during orientation.