For some colleges, orientation means conducting ice breakers and helping students connect their computers. While the first few days at Providence include some of that, students have also been orienting themselves with the valleys and hills of metro Los Angeles.

On Tuesday, the resident life staff and the new students visited the Getty Center, before descending into Hollywood to explore it on foot. They followed up dinner at In-N-Out by heading to the Hollywood Bowl for the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s performance of works by Franz Joseph Haydn. Freshman Henry Hanse, of Pompton Plains, NJ, enjoyed time at the Getty, one of the nation’s premier art museums. “Seeing art through the ages was a great way to start out the year in this place I’ll call home,” he said. He also noted that Hollywood lacked the glamor often connected with it.

The 18 new students hail from 11 different states, including New Hampshire, New Mexico, and Michigan. The incoming class also includes several transfer students as well. Despite temperatures pushing 100° last Friday, most of the students were comfortably settled in their rooms by dinner time.

Embark! (new student orientation) kicked off on Friday night with dinner for the new students and their parents in Franson Hall. Afterwards, Dr. Ryan McIlhenny spoke about Providence’s style of education by focusing on the words reformedintegral, and liberal arts. The talk served as a introduction to the weekend’s events and gave the new students a foundation for their upcoming year of study. In addition, Professor John Milton elaborated on Providence’s mission statement in Saturday morning’s chapel.

Of course students have had the requisite handbook talks and placement tests, but the Student Life department’s commitment to deep friendships has undergirded these talks and procedures. “Not only has it been informative, but it’s drawn us as a new class closer to one another,” Tim Veltkamp, of Belton, MO, said. Providence has also made a point over the years to include parents during orientation weekend. On Saturday night, Interim President Dominic Acquila hosted a dinner at Pinocchio’s Restaurant near campus. Earlier in the day, parent and Providence staff member Dawn Dirksen addressed the parents about “Letting Go and Staying Connected.”

President Acquila spoke on the “Wisdom and Power of the Cross” at convocation on Friday, August 24. This convocation marks the 8th in Providence history.


Below, the Hollywood Bowl. Picture by Henry Hanse.


Convocation, picture by Max Belz