Saturday, August 19, 2006

'Moving in Saturday at AU - a very good day

This is my fourth ‘moving in’ day in AU’s south side dorm complex, It is the third during which I have put on my apron and nametag, mingling among students and parents, serving fresh strawberries, cheese crackers, drinks and other snacks. This was the best moving in day so far. The weather was not too hot. AU staff members have become increasingly numerous and skilled in their ability to manage large numbers of vehicles, parents and students. Kudos, in particular, to AU’s Executive Director of Housing and Dining Services, Julie Weber, who may be the best manager at the university.

What particularly struck me today was the level of civility and consideration that everyone exhibited during what can be a demanding and stressful time. I particularly enjoy speaking with parents - many of whom are now the age of my own children. I met some particularly nice ones today. They seemed able to strike just the right balance between providing support for their new first year students and encouraging independence - the process of beginning to break the bonds of parental control. It was a long and intense day, but at the end - now - I feel more energized than when the day begin.

Mingling with and supporting human beings when their are exhibiting the very best of their humanity will do that. One wouldn’t necessarily think that a moving in day would be such a time, but this one was.


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