Freshman Convocation Disaster

by Edward Angell

On August 26, 2013 the College of Staten Island held its first ever freshman convocation event that welcomed more than 2,000 new students to the college. That being said, the event from start to finish was completely unorganized and poorly planned. You would expect with over 2,000 attendees it to be very carefully thought out and coordinated. In fact it was the quite the opposite which had many incoming freshman confused and frustrated.

The very beginning of the event saw a line that stretched at its height over half the great lawn just to register for the event. Freshman were given a paper detailing what the event was going to consist of which was a series of speeches from current and past students of the school. However even before the speeches themselves there was more confusion as to where the event was going to end up taking place. The day of the event saw a heavy overcast settling over the area and a slight drizzle started which caused a large group of people to move towards the auditorium in fear of heavy rain.

However the group of hundreds of students was turned back at the auditorium doors toward the great lawn, which left more students upset and frustrated at the lack of planning the event consisted of. The end result was everyone herding towards the upper half of the great lawn facing the hastily assembled stage struggling to see over one another. Along with the event program, students were also given a ridiculously small seat to sit on for when they would inevitably have to sit on the lawn itself.

Mind you this poses a health hazard as the local geese have no problem leaving their droppings all over the field. For those that do not know, geese droppings are very hazardous for your health, carrying bacteria like E.Coli and salmonella. Both are potentially deadly with symptoms such as nausea, diarrhea and abdominal pain.

With the droppings all over the lawn coming into contact with the hazardous waste was very likely. After finally settling in on the uncomfortable and filthy grass students were forced to sit and listen to two hours of speeches from the College of Staten Island’s current students and also the Alumni of the school. After two torturous hours of bland speeches the huge mob of students was to head back towards the auditorium for snacks and refreshments leaving even more students to question why it couldn’t be held there in the first place. The snacks were consisting of peanuts, dry over salted pretzels and ice cream bars.

With all these snacks you would figure they would have enough drinks to help ingest the salty food but they ended up running out of refreshments at the very beginning due to the rush of students stampeding the stands, along with people in the crowd using the plastic seats as discs and flinging them into the crowd hitting students and faculty alike. Some students could be seen flinging the seats as hard as they could purposely into the crowds to possibly hurt innocent bystanders.

As the event finally came to a close the aftermath was many of the seats and countless peanut shells littering the grass and walkways of the campus. If the college has plans to make this an annual event then the next one had better be thought out way in advance or risk the same horrible outcome as this one.

Hopefully the College will get it together for the next attempt at welcoming another freshman class and not leave a bad taste in their mouths.

Categories: Opinion

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