In place of an in-person orientation, new students explored the College of Fine Arts and Communications from their couches and kitchen tables
New Student Orientation is a valuable part of the BYU student experience, helping to ease fears and generate excitement about the coming school year. But this year, COVID-19 safety protocols required some creative solutions, leading to BYU’s first virtual New Student Orientation for Fall 2020.
Held on August 14, the online orientation for the College of Fine Arts and Communications was hosted by Associate Dean Jeremy Grimshaw. Following a brief video introduction to the college, Grimshaw led a Zoom session from his basement, highlighting the various CFAC departments and programs. Students could then continue on to individual department webinars or stay for Grimshaw’s Q&A session.
“The orientation process is pretty crucial for us,” Grimshaw said. “It’s not just another meeting. It’s so important that students start off on the right foot. We wanted to provide a gathering space where we could welcome everybody and let them know what resources are available.”
Many of the questions from students focused on how the pandemic would affect everyday life, such as how practice rooms would work with the new safety protocols in place. Grimshaw encouraged navigating these unusual circumstances with flexibility, and emphasized what brings the college together.
“Our students are artists and performers, storytellers and creators,” he said. “There will be some unknowns. We might have to deal with changing situations, but we can always make something unique out of the situation.”