Bama Bound welcomes freshmen before fall

CW | Kalyn-Wright Davis An Avanti leads a group of incoming freshmen during their Bama Bound orientation.

CW | Kalyn-Wright Davis
An Avanti leads a group of incoming freshmen during their Bama Bound orientation.

For Brittan Jarmon, getting into an engineering program at a great college was certainly never the problem. With engineering programs across the nation vying to recruit females into the work force, Jarmon’s hard work in high school opened up many doors for her when it came time to choose a college. After years of daydreaming about Ivy League universities, she decided instead to find an institution where she could receive a quality education without bankrupting her parents.

After attending her Honors Bama Bound freshman orientation session earlier this month, Jarmon said she was certain she’d chosen the right school for her.

Jarmon said her orientation made her feel at home and more comfortable on The University of Alabama’s campus, an aspect of the school that she had been attracted to early on.

“I’ve never been too interested in football, so I wasn’t biased because of sports,” Jarmon said. “I chose UA because the campus is beautiful, and I feel more at home there. I can’t wait to spend my next four years in Tuscaloosa, and I’m ready to see what the future has in store for me.”

Jarmon said choosing an early session made the orientation process much easier.

“I anticipated an exciting but stressful two days, and I’m glad to say it was more of the former,” Jarmon said. “As soon as I arrived on campus, I was excited for the fall. I was happy and relieved to be around so many other students who were just as anxious as I was to register.”

Jarmon said the University’s Avanti team was an additional high point in her experience at Bama Bound.

The Avantis lead orientation at the University, and since 1975, the students who comprise the Avanti team have worked with incoming students like Jarmon to make the transition from high school to college a little smoother, if not more fun.

“[The Avanti team] answered every question we had and helped get us pumped up for the fall,” Jarmon said. “The diverse group represents UA’s student body well, which makes any student feel like he or she can fit in on campus without a doubt.”

Ronte Pritchett, student coordinator for orientation at the University, described the summer Bama Bound orientation sessions as a necessary stepping stone for incoming freshmen. With the guidance of Avanti team members, incoming freshmen are provided organized opportunities to break the ice with other students.

The ice-breaking process doesn’t have to be so awkward either, Pritchett said. One of his favorite Bama Bound activities is playing “Battleship” with canoes at the Rec Center.

“It’s really fun,” Pritchett said. “You have four people in the canoe, and you pretty much just shovel water into the other person’s canoe and try to get them to sink.”

Pritchett said aside from allowing students an opportunity to enjoy the inherent fun of water games, becoming an Avanti team member allows upperclassmen to use their experiences to help a new set of students.

“It’s a great leadership opportunity,” Pritchett said. “It’s a big family, and it’s given me a lot of networking experience. I consider it a stepping stone to success and a great opportunity to impact the lives of other students.”