Bleed Purple! A Thank You To The Stonehill Peer Mentors Team
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Bleed Purple! A Thank You To The Stonehill Peer Mentors Team

Thanks to Stonehill Peer Mentors who make Stonehill home

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Bleed Purple! A Thank You To The Stonehill Peer Mentors Team

Change is one of the hardest things to go through, yet it impossible for anyone to avoid. There are two types of change: external and internal. External change is clear to people, for example, a new hairstyle or clothing choice. While on the other hand, internal change is more complex, involving feelings such as fear, joy and stress. For most 18-year-olds, heading off to college is the first time a major change becomes reality. Most teens have one town, one friend group, one family, one house for so many years creating a consistent “home” in each person’s life. With fall rolling around, there is a disruption to the known constant at home with college students embarking on a new chapter in their lives. But, at Stonehill College, the transition was cushioned with the ease the peer mentors provided during both the spring and fall orientations.

Flash back to June 2016. The prospective freshman class of 2020 are arriving on Stonehill’s campus for the first time as a group. Driving down the long street leading to the college, parents gave their kids a pep-talk trying to comfort the nerves rushing through every student's brain. As the cars approached the entrance to the school, a purple cloud roared with screams and shouts welcoming the newest class of college students.

“Hill yeah!", “Can you dab for me?”, “Purple is the new black” read just a few of the signs giving students the first taste of how enthusiastic and prepared the peer mentors were for the orientation program. After arriving on campus and setting up each student's nook for the next 48 hours, the new arrivals were divided into groups with two or three peer mentors as the leaders. Throughout the days, there was almost never a dull moment. If there was ever a chance to have a quiet moment, the peer mentors would start an ice breaker or activity to help form connections with a small group of students. Each peer mentor was so different there was a way for all students to connect with someone. Finally, when spring orientation came to a close, the small glimpse each student got of Stonehill was hopeful and bright, thanks to the peer mentors.

Throughout the summer, each peer mentor was at the ready if any students had questions, concerns or in need of reassurance. They actively posted on each individual group’s Facebook page giving tips and guidance about topics such as book buying/renting or what to pack for the dorm rooms. With anxious feelings building up with the thought of leaving home, the peer mentors were a calm reassurance that they were there for each student with support and help.

With fall orientation now in the past, it is clear the peer mentors were the ones to create such a smooth transition for the incoming class of 2020. Breaking up into groups on move-in day created a known element when so much was unknown. The peer mentors felt like new parents after the ones each student had lived with for so long said their final goodbyes. There was never a moment to reminisce about home because the peer mentors kept the groups engaged and busy to help reconnected the group members and create bonds. Walking into the dining hall on Monday was a daunting task, but if nothing else there are a few familiar faces in the room because of the peer mentors and their hard work to create a bonded group from a bunch of strangers from all over the country.

It was comforting to have the peer mentors there because they knew exactly how to not only survive, but thrive at Stonehill. Each student can respect and look up to the example his or her peer mentor established during orientation. It is because of you, peer mentors, that Stonehill continues to be a warm and welcoming community. So, thank you peer mentors, for helping to create a home away from home here at Stonehill!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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