AS THE day of the Thomasian Welcome Walk nears, the incoming freshmen may be thrilled but at the same time nervous since they are about to tread an uncharted territory.
However, this should not stop them from enjoying their entry to the Arch of the Centuries, which marks the beginning of their college life in UST.
The Flame listed seven things Thomasian freshmen can expect during what will surely be one of their most memorable events in the University.
Meeting blockmates for the first time
While some freshmen may have reached out to their classmates via social media or messaging apps before the event, meeting them in the flesh will definitely provide them more thrills.
Since each block will be assigned to a holding room, it can be a great opportunity for freshmen to introduce themselves to their classmates and build new friendships… or perhaps something more than that.
Information on the designated holding rooms for Artlets at the St. Raymund de Peñafort Building will be provided by the different program societies.
Since the Welcome Walk will be held in the middle of the wet season, participants are likely to experience rain on their parade.
Students are encouraged to bring umbrellas, raincoats or their jackets so they can actively participate in the event regardless of the weather.
Last year, the Welcome Walk went on as planned despite the rain, with the students holding their umbrellas while entering the Arch.
But freshmen should get used to such a weather. After all, it has been said that one cannot claim to be a Thomasian if he or she did not experience not just the rain, but also the flood in España.
Entering the Quadricentennial Pavilion
The multi-purpose gymnasium of the University will serve as the venue for the onsite ROARientation. During the program, freshies will get to know more about the University. Not only will it be informative — it will also be entertaining as it will feature performances from various organizations.
Before the program, the University will hold a Welcome Mass for the new students. Of course, the liturgical celebration will also be an opportunity for Artlet freshmen to pray that they will march in the same venue after four years.
Heavy traffic around the university
As thousands of new students gather on this day, heavy traffic around the four corners of UST namely, Dapitan, Lacson, Padre Noval, and España are expected. To prevent getting stuck in the traffic, it is advisable that freshmen arrive earlier than scheduled.
According to the general instructions provided by the Faculty of Arts and Letters, the Artlets are expected to be in their respective holding rooms at 6:30 a.m. So if you want this day to be cheerful rather than stressful, be early.
Participants of this event are advised to wear a top that corresponds to the color of their faculty or college. Freshmen from the Faculty of Arts and Letters should wear navy-blue colored tops with proper pants and shoes.
According to the instructions released by the faculty, they may wear jeans or slacks. Jogger pants, ripped pants, overly tight pants, leggings, shorts, and short skirts are prohibited. Wearing open-toed footwear is also not allowed. Instead, they may wear sneakers, rubber shoes, closed crocs, topsiders, loafers, and espadrilles.
Before and during the event, students should prioritize their safety. According to the updated COVID-19 protocols from the Office of the Secretary-General, wearing of face masks is highly encouraged especially indoors.
Although filling out a health declaration form is not required anymore, those experiencing COVID-19 symptoms will have to accomplish the form.
Observe safety precautions throughout the event. Bring home happiness, not viruses.
As part of the warm welcome to Thomasian freshmen, they will be receiving a freebie kit containing things they will possibly need throughout their stay in UST.
Last year, the kit included a fan, an umbrella that they used during their rainy entrance to the Arch, alcohol, a face mask and a light stick.
These freebies will be distributed by the student council of their respective faculties and colleges.
The Flame, the official student publication of the Faculty of Arts and Letters, will also be handing out flyers and stickers at the St. Raymund de Peñafort Building.
The much-anticipated Welcome Walk 2023 will be held on Aug. 3, six days before the opening of classes. F – A. Villamayor