Photo by Heather Middleton
"Man, I'm tired," said Victoria McKinney, while catching her breath, after travailing up two flight of stairs.
With her hands filled with bags, and boxes tucked under her arms, McKinney –– an incoming freshmen at Clayton State University –– was moving into her new dorm at Laker Hall, on Thursday.
Clayton State University's staff and returning students greeted scores of freshmen, all day long. "Veteran" students and staff members took on the volunteer role, assisting many weary and anxious freshman with hauling their belongings, directions, and advice, as those new to campus got settled into their homes away home for the next school year.
John Shiffert, the director of university relations, made an appearance, Thursday morning, to greet new students and their parents. "I was there to answer any questions they may have," said Shiffert, adding, jovially, "I'm somewhat of the information guy."
Like McKinney, Ashley Moore, another incoming freshman, pressed her way through the sweltering heat to get acquainted with her new residence at Laker Hall.
Moore, who will be studying biology, said she was ready to get the school year started. "I'm just in the [mood] of getting everything in place," she said.
Her reasons for attending CSU, she said, have a lot to with her family's ties to the university. "My Aunt actually came here, and she said [CSU] had challenging course work," said Moore.
Victoria McKinney, who said she will be studying English, was excited about starting a new chapter in her life. "I very excited about college, I can't wait to go to some of the games, meet new people, and learn new stuff," she said.
She considers herself lucky, she said, because the CSU campus is in close proximity to her hometown. Her family only lives 10 minutes away in Fulton County. Something that, she said, will work to her benefit. "I know everything around here, and if I need something, I'm not too far from home."
McKinney, who had already embellished the standard-issue decor of her room, with white and pink accessories, said she was a little nervous about the decor of the bathroom she would be sharing with a roommate.
"I'm a fan of pink, obviously," she said, while laughing. "When I talked to her [my roommate] over the phone, she said she hated pink. I was like ‘darn,' but I think we can work it out."
Ashley Moore, who didn't seem to relish her first time being away from home for such a long stretch, said her main goal was just to get through her first year at the university.
Shiffert said move-in at the university will continue, today, with upperclassmen moving into the Clayton Station Apartment Complex, which will house approximately 854.
He added that the apartment complex was originally owned a real estate company before being purchased the university earlier this summer. "This will bring the university's total student housing to 1,305 beds," he said.