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From Shy to Sure: Class of 2022 Attends Orientation

August 17, 2018

From Shy to Sure: Class of 2022 Attends Orientation

Students looking at their new schedules. They entered Radnor High School curious, filled with nervous excitement. Their eyes darted around the expansive lobby as they made their way into the auditorium, each cautiously accepting a souvenir “Radnor Pride” bracelet from smiling upperclassmen. Soon, principal Dan Bechtold would greet them for the first time as members of the Class of 2022.

A mere four hours later, as the 5th annual Freshman FUNdamentals orientation program came to a close, these same 200 soon-to-be 9th-graders streamed into that same lobby with newfound confidence and comfort, grabbing their official class T-shirts and copies of their schedules for the 2018-19 school year.

They were well on their way to being right at home.

Launched prior to the start of the 2013-14 school year, Freshman FUNdamentals expands on the traditional high school orientation program to provide incoming freshmen with a wealth of advice and information from school administrators, teachers, guidance counselors, student ambassadors, and special guests. Attendees participate in teambuilding activities, take a guided tour of the school, learn strategies to cope with stress and balance priorities, and discuss important topics such as equality and diversity.

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This year’s program, which was held on August 14, opened with a “Welcome to Radnor!” presentation in the auditorium. Along with Mr. Bechtold, various school administrators and guidance counselor J.J. Lemon reviewed important information about the school and its programs as well as academic and support resources. Student ambassadors also spoke, including senior Nazim Duran, who provided information as a member of the school’s Honor Council.

“[I discussed] what the Honor Code was and what the Honor Council is, what we do and what we represent and the kinds of activities we have,” Nazim said.

After the welcoming presentation, the incoming freshmen split into groups and took turns participating in various activities, tours, and other informational presentations.

Students are engaged in a workshop on diversity. “[Mubarak] Lawrence came in to run a session on diversity which has been great for the kids,” Freshman FUNdamentals faculty coordinator and English teacher Jessica Verguldi-Scott said. “He has a lot of fun activities to get them up and moving.”

“The day was very energetic,” Verguldi-Scott added. “All our sessions were filled with students, teachers, counselors, and administrators helping out. Our upperclass volunteers were amazing, answering questions and giving the ins-and-outs of what it’s like to be at the high school.”

Upperclassmen were eager to take the future high schoolers on tours of RHS.

“It’s really fun showing all the freshmen around and seeing all the new faces!” senior Alana Malik said.

Another student tour guide added: “The kids are super outgoing, and you can tell they woke up and were so excited to come.”

The incoming freshmen had similar sentiments. Many said they were most excited for the new freedoms that come with being a high-schooler. Others expressed enthusiasm in joining the band.

Radnor High School “seems like a neat place” remarked one soon-to-be 9th-grader. “I learned a lot!”

The best is yet to come.



By Amanda Magen, RHS Class of 2019