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Ram Welcome Parent & Family Newsletter


August 18-21, 2011

Ram Welcome

Dear Parents & Families of New Colorado State Students,


We encourage new student and family involvement in Ram Welcome!

Ram Welcome: Experience CSU!  is designed to provide an opportunity for new students to create community and learn all of the great things about being a CSU student before the semester even begins.  We offer this programming because we know our most successful students are those who 'plant their feet' here on campus and take ownership of their experience at Colorado State.  We want to help them start in the right direction!

The student Ram Welcome schedule lasts the entire four day period before the semester begins (Thursday, August 18 – Sunday, August 21).  During this time, students will have the opportunity to build community, learn about academic expectations, meet their faculty, find their classrooms and prepare for the beginning of their collegiate careers, participate in fun traditions such as Hike to the "A" and We Are CSU diversity programming and photo, and connect to their Ram Welcome groups and floor communities on a more personal level.  The experience is designed to help students feel comfortable and connected when classes begin on Monday, August 22, 2011. 

There is also a parent and family Ram Welcome schedule that begins on Thursday, August 18 and ends at noon on Friday, August 19.  We hope you will join us for the full day and a half of Ram Welcome for parents and families because it is intentionally designed with you in mind.  This college transition is not just all about your first year student; it is also about you and your family. Learn tips and strategies for supporting your student through their first year in college, learn about important resources on campus and make connections with other CSU parents and families.  (Read more below!)  We are often surprised to hear from local and Denver area families who don't believe they need to participate in Ram Welcome and instead, plan to drop off their student and immediately return back home.  The unintended message is that this is just like high school and not a special time to celebrate the transition into a new phase of life. Local students see a lot of families surrounding their students and can often feel detached, lonely and sad.  Instead of feeling like a part of a community at CSU, they immediately leave to find their old high school friends or go to their old hang outs to feel like they belong. If you are a local parent or family member, please check your schedule to reserve time to attend Ram Welcome through Friday at noon.  You'll be amazed what you learn about CSU: a gem in your backyard!


When you do leave campus, Ram Welcome Leaders & Resident Assistants will be working to help ease your student's transition, but we also need your help in making this a successful transition for your student.  Parent & Family programming ends at noon on Friday, August 19.  The inevitable goodbyes are hard and can be emotional.  We recommend you take cues from your student on how best to leave.  If your student is involved and ready to engage in the CSU community, do your best to match their happy tone, even though you may be hurting inside.  (Remember the tips we shared during Preview or Next Step Orientation around the transition model and how difficult it can be when family members are in different phases?).  If your student is sad about your departure, take the opportunity to remind your student about the next time you'll see them.  Concrete dates give you and your student something to look forward to.  Will it be Homecoming & Family Weekend?  Will you be able to come to campus for Labor Day weekend?  If your student is feeling uncertain, it is likely because of the bevy of emotions that come with any transition.  Reinforce your belief in their success and remind them of their strengths.  Words of encouragement can go a long way to helping students plant their feet at CSU. If you are feeling uncertain, check in with your student about your agreed upon time of departure. Hold to that time because your student may feel torn between being with family and joining this new-found community of peers. Long, drawn-out goodbyes are exhausting and rarely get easier as time passes.  Say your goodbyes, include those messages of love, support, and belief in their abilities and make that break for home.  If you planned a long weekend in Northern Colorado, the Parent & Family website and the Ft. Collins Visitor Guide in the Parent & Family Guide produced with our partners at University Parent Media provide great links for fun things to see and do while you're here.  As you plan your weekend, there will be some "down time" in the Ram Welcome schedule on Sunday afternoon for you to return to campus to say those final goodbyes before leaving for home. 

Thanks in advance for sharing your student and your whole family with Colorado State University!  We hope to see you in just a few weeks!


take care, Jody & Kacee


Jody Donovan, Ph.D.
Dean of Students & Executive Director of Parent & Family Programs


Kacee Collard Jarnot, M.S.

Assistant Director of Parent & Family Programs


Parent & Family Programs

Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs
Colorado State University
201 Administration Bldg
Fort Collins, CO 80521
(970) 491-5312

Ram Welcome Fall 2011 Schedule of Events - Thursday, August 18, 2011


Residence Hall Move-In

By Tonie Miyamoto, Director of Communications for Housing & Dining Services


Residence Hall Move-In will begin on Thursday, August 18 at 8:00 a.m.  Students and families should expect the check-in process at the halls to take about an hour.  Specific traffic and parking guidelines have been put in place for Move-In Day to make the process as seamless as possible. Several major construction projects are underway on campus so traffic patterns will be different this year – please click on this campus map to help guide traffic during move-in. Here are some helpful pointers and reminders to prepare for Move-In Day:

  • Be sure to review the online Move-In Guide prior to your arrival on campus.

  • Residents of halls on the South side of campus (Braiden, Newsom, Academic Village, Edwards, Ingersoll, Summit) are asked to enter campus from the South (Prospect Street). This is the same route that was used during Preview.

  • Residents of halls on the North side of campus (Durward, Westfall, Corbett, Parmelee, Allison) are asked to enter campus from the North (Laurel Street).

  • Temporary parking will be available along Laurel and Plum Streets for unloading. Students and families are asked to move their vehicles to the Engineering and Moby parking lots after unloading at the residence halls to allow other vehicles to enter the hall parking lots and utilize the temporary parking spots.

  • Specific traffic instructions for each hall are included on the back side of the Move-In Day map (attached above) and are also available on the Housing & Dining website.

  • Police officers will be on site to direct traffic and control traffic flow. CSU staff members will be available to assist you and give directions to your hall. If you have any questions, please stop at one of our Welcome Booths and we will be happy to assist.  


Parent & Family Reception...Logistics & General Information

Student Recreation Center



Whether you are moving your student into his or her residence hall, an off-campus apartment, or just rearranging their space (if your student will commute from home), move-in day is hectic and usually hot. After you've moved your students' belongings into their spaces, please join us for refreshments & light appetizers!  We offer air conditioning & University Leadership for dialogue and questions throughout the reception.  This quick Q&A will help with logistics:


Can my student attend the reception with me?

Your students will begin their Ram Welcome journey at the same time, in different locations.  It is vital for students to attend these sessions to begin to build community at Colorado State.  (See full student schedules below.)

  • Students living on campus will attend a Residence Hall Floor Meeting at 4:00 pm.  They will get a quick introduction to Residence Life and meet their Resident Assistant (RA) and their Ram Welcome Leader (an upper-division student dedicated to a particular floor during the 4-day welcome week experience). 

  • Students living off-campus will attend the Off-Campus Student Welcome at 4:00 pm in the Student Recreation Center to meet other commuter students & learn about great campus resources.

  • Transfer Students can connect with one another and begin their transition to CSU at 2:00 pm in the Student Recreation Center, and then at 4:00 pm, meet with other Adult Learners to learn about campus resources specific to students who know what it means to be 'in college' but aren't yet sure what it means to be a 'CSU Student'. 

Where is the reception located?

In the Student Recreation Center in the middle of campus.  The main entrance of the Student Recreation Center is on the southwest side of the building, closest to Meridian Avenue.  Please note, Meridian Avenue has limited access, so families will likely need to walk from individual Residence Halls or "Z" parking lots on the exterior of campus.  The actual reception will be held in the Main Gym of the Student Recreation Center.  When you enter the Student Recreation Center, look for the Parent & Family Reception signs pointing back and to the left side of the building.  When you've reached the Parent & Family Reception banner, you've arrived!  Please enjoy the refreshments and take a few minutes to rest and relax before the University Welcome.


Can I pick up tickets to the New Student & Family Picnic at the Parent & Family Reception?

Yes!  Look for a table and the "Pick Up New Student and Family Picnic Tickets Here" sign just outside of the reception.


What happens after the Reception?

After the reception, Presidential Ambassadors & volunteers from the Division of Student Affairs will direct you out of the Student Recreation Center and to the north entrance of Moby Arena.  Once there, we ask that you sit in Sections C, B, A, JJ, R and Q.  Your students will enter the arena by Residence Hall and the attached map of Moby Arena indicates where students will be sitting during the University Welcome.


University Welcome

Moby Arena


After the reception, students and families fill Moby Arena to kick off the academic year when the President, Provost, Vice President for Student Affairs, and ASCSU President welcome you to Colorado State University.  During this GREEN OUT event, all students wear their For-Ever-Green T-shirts to show their CSU pride. This event is packed – both with people and with speakers – so we ask parents & families to sit in specific sections of Moby Arena, just behind the stage, to be a part of the welcome message given to students.  For many incoming students, it is vitally important to have their family's support and encouragement to be successful at CSU.  The visual of families sitting behind the speakers and supporting students and the University in this transition helps students feel ready to take on the challenges and opportunities ahead of them.  We encourage you to use the above map to find your student & think of ways to encourage and support him or her during this welcome. 


Attending the New Student & Family Picnic?  Get Your Tickets Early, then Enjoy the Picnic & Carnival


Join the CSU Alumni Association for an outdoor dinner on the Intramural Fields immediately following the University Welcome.  This fabulous event is offered to families at no additional cost – you just need a ticket to enter!  To avoid the pre-picnic line, families are welcome to pick up tickets throughout the day at the following locations (see map marked with yellow dots):

  • 8:00 am – 3:30 pm – Durrell Center Lower Level, Ram's Horn Sunken Lounge, and Lory Student Center iBox

  • 3:30 pm – 4:15 pm – Student Recreation Center, just outside of the Parent & Family Reception

  • 6:15 pm – 7:00 pm – Information Tents near the picnic on the IM Fields

Please note, you'll only need tickets for present family members.  New students will enter the picnic by swiping their RamCard.  When you arrive at the ticket booths listed above, you'll be asked for either your student's name or their CSUID number and the number of tickets you'll need (excluding your student new CSU student).


After you eat, enjoy games, snacks, carnival rides and live music on the Intramural Fields!  The CSU Carnival is the perfect way to kick off the academic year and we invite students and the whole family to participate until 11:00 pm.  In addition to the action on the IM Fields, the Student Recreation Center hosts "Retro Rec".  Get ready for beehive hair dos and fun costumes!


Ram Welcome Fall 2011 Schedule of Events - Friday, August 19, 2011


Don't Leave Just Yet!


Early Friday morning, Ram Welcome Leaders will guide students from their residence halls (or meeting locations for off-campus students) to their individual colleges to learn more about what it means to be a CSU student.  We also offer programming for parents and families in the Lory Student Center to ease the transition to CSU and to learn more about campus resources.  Each session will be offered three times so parents and families may rotate through the sessions in order of interest:

  • 8:30-9:30 am

  • 9:45-10:45 am

  • 11:00 am- noon

Transitions II - Cherokee Park Ballroom
This session assists parents and families in your own family members' transitions now that your student has made the physical move to CSU. Stories are sure to make you laugh and cry!


Student Conduct and Campus Safety - Room 230
This session provides additional information about campus and personal safety, the conduct system and conflict resolution process, and will address important campus policies, leaving time for individual questions at the close of the presentation.


CSU Health Network - Grey Rock Room
This session provides additional information about what CSU Health Network has to offer students and how parents and families can support students in times of sickness or stress.


In between sessions, we hope you'll indulge in coffee and breakfast snacks while you interact with our partners in the RAMFAM Association Business Directory Fair in the University Club.  Members in the directory are recommended to you by current CSU parents and family members and their support of Parent & Family Programs sponsors all RAMFAM Association meetings.  We think it's best to learn about services offered from the businesses themselves!

Ram Welcome Fall 2011 Schedule of Events - By Population


Make Plans to Attend Homecoming & Family Weekend - September 30-October 2, 2011 


The weekend kicks off Friday, September 30, with Housing Options After the First Year. In this session, panelists will help you explore all of your student's housing options, covering residence halls, fraternity and sorority living, living off-campus, and the pros and cons of purchasing a home in Fort Collins. Saturday brings a morning RAMFAM Association meeting before the Homecoming & Family Weekend Tailgate.  The tailgate provides families an opportunity to connect and show your Ram Pride before the football game vs. San Jose State University. 


Over the years, families have asked for more free time during the weekend to spend time with their students.  So this year, we're doing just that – programming for Family Weekend ends after the Homecoming Football game.  We hope you'll enjoy Saturday evening and Sunday morning with your student in Fort Collins before heading home!  Here is a tentative list of all the Family Weekend Events – check the Homecoming & Family Weekend website for updates:

Friday, September 30, 2001

  • Housing Options After the First Year

  • Festival & Reunions on the Oval

  • Homecoming Parade

  • Bonfire, Pep Rally & Fireworks 

Saturday, October 1, 2011

  • 5K Race

  • Hillel Bagel Brunch

  • RAMFAM Association Meeting

  • The Official Homecoming & Family Weekend Tailgate

  • Homecoming Football Game (CSU vs. SJSU)


Quick Links for Additional Information