Reporting Reg Chapman
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — It’s move in day for freshmen at the University of Minnesota — and they were met by serious construction and road closures.
The U put together a plan to help guide parents and students around the detours and closure to get to their new homes.
More than 5,000 freshmen are moving into their new homes and more than 500 volunteers, including university president Eric Kaler and his wife were on hand to help.
“Pulled right up and they told us what lot to go in they helped unload all our stuff into these bins here,” said Saxon Dorshow.
It’s a part of the plan the university put together to take the guess work out of move-in day.
“It’s a three-day process moving in our freshmen,” said Mannix Clark, associate director of housing and residential life. “This is day two and it’s our largest day.”
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Road and building projects all over campus forced the university to be proactive.
They put a plan into place to help guide parents around Washington Avenue, which is closed for construction of the Central Corridor Light Rail.
“They sent out a specific time block for everyone to move in so everyone wasn’t showing up at 9, at one time. They sent everyone specific turn-by-turn instructions on how to get to each residence hall,” said University Communications Director Tim Busse.
And the plan worked.
“It took us five minutes to pull up and get here. They took everything out. The traffic was absolutely no problem,” said Loren Dorshow.
A smooth process for parents already dealing with the anxiety of leaving their college freshman on their own.
“On campus this year we’ll have students from 46 states and 41 different countries,” Clark said.
Students at the U were excited to move in, but for parents it was bittersweet.
“It’s a little sad,” said Sally Grononi, parent of freshman.
She had just driven from Chisholm, Minnesota.
“I’m so excited for her. She’s wanted to move to the city since she was about 10,” Grononi said.
Freshmen will get further safety instructions, so they can move around a campus full of construction projects without getting hurt.
“‘Welcome Week,’ which starts on Wednesday will help students acclimate to campus,” Clark said. “We make sure they know about the campus connector, bike routes, all that stuff.”