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Making the Transition to College


Making the Transition to College


MOUNT OLIVE - University of Mount Olive (UMO) Director of Campus Life Nicole Garrett knows a thing or two about getting students ready for college.  After all, it’s her job to help make the transition from high school to college as smooth and carefree as possible for incoming students.  With move-in at UMO scheduled for Saturday, August 19, Garrett recently sat down with UMO Public Relations Director Rhonda Jessup to answer a few questions that every incoming student should know no matter what institution they plan to attend.


What should incoming students bring to campus?


At the University of Mount Olive, each residence room comes furnished with a twin-XL bed frame and mattress, wardrobe, dresser, desk and chair.  Students can arrange their space to make it all their own! Residential areas also have study spaces, lounges, laundry facilities, and covered bike racks as added amenities. We encourage students to communicate with their new roommate regarding what items they each plan to bring to avoid duplication of some items like mini-fridges, televisions, DVD players, etc. The following may be helpful in preparing for your move to Mount Olive:

·      Bedding

·      Mattress pad

·      Towels and washcloths

·      Shower caddy

·      shower sandals

·      Laundry basket and laundry supplies

·      Cleaning supplies

·      Clothes hangers

·      Storage organizers

·      Surge protector and extension cords

·      Mini-fridge (no larger than 3.2 cubic foot)

·      Microwave

·      Television

·      Stereo or MP3 docking station

·      DVD player

·      Desk lamp/Floor lamp

·      Flashlight and batteries

·      School supplies

·      First Aid supplies

·      Pictures and other decorative items


Are there any items that are prohibited in the residence halls?


Students are permitted to have some appliances in their rooms to make their stay on-campus more comfortable. However, there are some items that are not safe and conducive in this community setting. Please be advised that the following items are prohibited from the residence halls:

·               Tobacco or tobacco products

·               Pets

·               Candles

·               Incense

·               Hookahs

·               Lava lamps

·               Halogen lamps

·               Toasters and/or toaster ovens

·               Grills and/or propane tanks

·               Hot plates

·               Kerosene

·               Standard coffeemakers (only Keurig type machines are permitted)

·               Other cooking appliances with open burners or exposed heating elements)


How should students communicate with family members back home?


Students should know that mom and dad are naturally going to be concerned about their student transitioning to college, especially if they're living on campus. Students should keep in contact with family more frequently the first few days to assure that they are transitioning well and learning the ropes of their new experience. However, most students will taper off communication after a few days and/or weeks. Realistically, students and families need to discuss what their expectations for maintaining communication are so parents don't think their student is avoiding them and so parents don't overwhelm their student with communication while they're trying to find balance in adjusting to their new world and maintaining their home roots.


What advice would you give about students getting involved on campus?


The first couple of months are crucial in getting acclimated to campus. I advise students to make sure they get outside of their residence hall and classroom and see what the university has to offer. I always tell students that they never know when they will make the long lasting friendship, relationship, or study partner who helps them get through it all.


What should incoming students expect that first week?


Welcome Week is our orientation program to help new incoming students transition to college and specifically our UMO community. There will be a number of sessions to help inform students about what to expect in college, how UMO operates, and a number of campus events in the evenings to get students interacting with one another.


What is an important piece of advice that every incoming student should know?

Starting college is all about making the transformation from one level of study and involvement to another. Meeting new people, attending classes on variable days, and getting to know professors will bring about new experiences for incoming students. For residential students, meeting and moving in with a new roommate brings challenges of sharing space together. Being positive, open minded to change, and willing to try new things, such as trying new foods in the cafeteria or new activities through the Campus Activity Board (CAB), are all important factors in making the adjustment to college life.



The University of Mount Olive is a private institution rooted in the liberal arts tradition with defining Christian values. The University, sponsored by the Convention of Original Free Will Baptists, has locations in Mount Olive, New Bern, Wilmington, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Research Triangle Park, Washington, Jacksonville, and in Smithfield at Johnston Community College.  For more information, visit