The FAMU Office of New Student Orientation made history at the 2015 Southern Regional Orientation Workshop (SROW). This weekend, SROW was hosted at Murray State University in Murray, Kentucky, where over 30 institutions of higher learning were represented.
“SROW stands for Southern Regional Orientation Workshop, which is a part of the National Orientation Directors Association. It is a training ground for orientation leaders or just any student leader in general,” Andre Green, FAMU Director of New Student Orientation, said. “The orientation leaders have the opportunity to represent FAMU to the fullest, and have to come up with chants, strolls and roll calls to use throughout the conference. They are also required to compete in the song, skit, and dance competition.”
The 12 FAMU Orientation Leader candidates competed in multiple categories amongst several other colleges in the region.
“From losing our voices to winning first place in three categories, we undoubtedly gave all that we had,” Sophomore Biology Student and O.L. Candidate, Amberly Williams, said. “The SROW experience is like none other. I couldn’t have imagined a better way to end the spring semester.”
FAMU N.S.O. has competed at SROW for the past seven years, and though they have placed in the competition before, this year they won their first ever first place title, and three first place titles in total.
The categories of these big wins include Undergraduate Case Study, Spirit Competition for Medium Delegation, and College Game Day: SSD Classic. In addition to these historic victories, they were also named the College Game Day: SSD Classic Grand Champion.
“The 2015 O.L. candidates have been preparing for SROW since December. Outside of the song, skit, and dance categories they participated in, Vincent Ross and I conducted a case study, a category FAMU N.S.O. has never competed in before,” office staff member and 2014 O.L., Celeste Stephens, said. “I was confident that our O.L.’s would place for the skit but winning ‘best overall’ for the case study was a complete shock to me.”
“We were challenged to identify each problem and solution in a situation where an issue arises between an O.L. and another team member or student. We only had one day to prepare and competed against 40 other groups. As the only HBCU represented at SROW, we are godly proud,” Stephens said.
After months of preparation and a hectic weekend of execution, the O.L. candidates have shown their regional colleagues what “excellence with caring” looks like.
“I am very happy and excited. I just couldn’t let the 2015 orientation leaders know how happy I was, I didn’t want them to get the big head before the summer,” Green said jokingly.
Now that SROW has come and gone, the Office of New Student Orientation is focused on preparing for the incoming class of 2019
“We will continue with the Orientation Training Institute for the 2015 orientation leaders. During SROW, the orientation staff attended several sessions to learn new techniques and strategies that we are looking to incorporate into the orientation agenda and programing for this summer,” Green said
The O.L. candidates are extremely proud of these historic accomplishments and look forward to maintaining the momentum in this summer’s new student orientations.