A Day in the Life of an Orientation Leader
What is it really like to be an orientation leader? Kimberly Rojo, member of the 2016 team, shares a typical day in the life of an orientation leader, including the ups and downs and the sweet reward at the end of a long day.
You wake up to hear the horrid sound of your alarm clock. All you want to do is hit snooze again and again. It’s 4:30 a.m. Even though you don’t have to report until 5:45 (actually, 5:40, but you’ll hear about that later), you need time to take a shower and do your hair and put your face on. You’re walking to work, and, as you look around you, you realize that you are up before the sun is. People are still snoring, and you are on your way to work. It’s okay, because you’re about to get free breakfast. Free delicious breakfast. After breakfast, it’s time to get to work, work, work, work, work.
Setting up is fairly easy, but you have those days when you and your team forget a pivotal item for set up. Even though you set up the same things every day, you somehow managed to make a little mistake. The morning is pretty easy going. Check in runs smoothly. Maybe it’s due to your great work ethic, or maybe it’s because the students and their guests are half asleep. Your introduction is honestly the highlight of your morning, especially if you give a funny piece of advice to the audience and they laugh.
Then the time to give the student and parent tours arrives. You’ll love doing tours at the beginning, because everyone is always in awe of the fact that you know so much information about Georgia State. I mean it’s only your job to know everything. Parent tours will most likely be your favorite of the two, just because they love to ask questions. And you’ll love answering them because you get to feel so knowledgeable. After this, the students and parents have some sessions before lunch. These always feels like they take forever. That’s because this is that time when lunch is so close but at the same time so far away.
When lunch finally arrives, you can’t wait to sit down and just stuff your face with some good mac n’ cheese and chicken. Don’t forget to stock up on those cookies! After lunch, the day seems to fly by. Sort of. It depends on what you’re doing. If you’re at iPad station, the day will seem like it will never end. However, you won’t care, because you get to sit and just look at the freshman making (in their minds) the huge decision of whether to take morning classes or afternoon classes. But, if you happen to be working speakers, then the day will go by super-fast (just because you’re constantly doing something). This will also be the time when parents bombard you with all the last minute questions. You’ll get some of the craziest questions from ‘How will my child know where everything is’ to ‘Are boys allowed into the girls rooms’ (and vice versa).
One of the best sessions you participate in is Parent Confidential. This is where the guests and parents (no students) get to ask those really embarrassing questions that they wouldn’t dare ask if their student was with them. By now, it should be around 4 p.m. You start to see less and less students and guests. You get a sly smile on your face, because you know that you’re almost done and get to go back to your room to sleep. Not going to lie, you are probably really tired and just want to leave. But that will all change when parents come up to you again, but this time they’re not asking you questions. This time they’re here to thank you. Thank you for helping them throughout the day. Thank you for answering all of their questions (even the crazy ones). Thank you for being an outstanding student with great leadership qualities. They’ll shake your hand or pat your shoulder. They might even give you a hug, because that’s how grateful they are. And honestly that’s the best feeling. Even if you’re tired or had a rough day, that one moment makes up for all of it, and you remember that this was the reason you decided to be an orientation leader.
~ Kimberly Rojo