We've Arrived

Week of Welcome celebration and events to kick-off academic year.

By Katy Hennig

USF News

TAMPA, Fla. (Aug. 22, 2013) Close to 700 “Bull Haul” volunteers spread out across the University of South Florida Tampa campus to assist more than 3,000 students and their families moving in to their new residence halls.

“What we do is we take a cart, we find a family and we help them take their stuff to their dorm and we continuously do that all day,” said Ryan Fordiani, a sophomore at USF studying Computer Science Engineering.

Fordiani volunteers with Bull Haul because he enjoys helping new students feel welcome. “We want students to know that USF is a very friendly place,” said Fordiani. “A lot of kids don’t know anybody, this helps them get to know people, talk to everybody, and de-stress is the main thing. We want the transition to be as easy as possible.”

Marketing freshman Kate Franza and her parents, Gordon and Kathryn, were thrilled to accept assistance from the Bull Haulers, unloading and transporting all of Franza’s belongings. “I think I packed fairly well,” said Franza as her mother carefully carried her cherished Rocky the Bull pillow pet. “My parents have helped me a lot.”

Franza will be a part of the Bulls Business Living Learning Community, living on the same floor and engaging with fellow business majors in her dorm. “I’m a little nervous, but also very excited.”

Hundreds of new and returning students filled USF’s Marshall Student Center to join USF System President Judy Genshaft and Rocky the Bull for the Week of Welcome Kick-Off Celebration.

Coordinated by Student Affairs’ New Student Connections department, the campus-wide event included a balloon drop, signaling the start of a week filled with more than 150 events and programs, designed to introduce students to new friends, as well as the services, organizations, departments and colleges on campus that students can engage with socially, academically and civically.

Over 1,000 new students gathered together on the field at Corbett Soccer Stadium on campus Thursday to participate in a newly formed tradition, standing in formation to spell out U-S-F.

2013 Week of Welcome festivities will continue through Aug. 31.

For a schedule of events, visit http://news.usf.edu/article/templates/?a=5603&z=210.

Katy Hennig can be reached at 813-974-6993.