Welcome Week at Rutgers–Camden

Paul Robeson Library faculty and staff were excited to welcome students back to campus with a series of events during Rutgers University–Camden’s Raptor Welcome and Welcome Week. Both Raptor Welcome and Welcome Week celebrated the return of the Scarlet Raptors with a theme of #ThePackIsBack.

Raptor Welcome, new student orientation at Rutgers–Camden, was held on Monday, August 30, and Tuesday, August 31. Raptor Welcome is traditionally for new students, but this year the event was intended for both first year-students and returning sophomores who were remote for their first year. At Raptor Welcome, students trekked across campus to complete three activities, including “Mission: Library,” a scavenger hunt that highlighted library services and spaces. Robeson Library faculty and staff developed clues that led students throughout the building (and outside). At each stop, they collected a letter of the alphabet, enabling them to decode a secret phrase once all stops were completed. Approximately 640 students completed “Mission: Library” as part of their Raptor Welcome experience.

Welcome Week is a campus-wide event series scheduled to run September 1 through September 12. At the Campus Involvement Fair on September 1, the library table invited new and returning students to engage with faculty and staff, pick up information about library services, and try their luck on the prize wheel. On September 2, Robeson hosted an outdoor Open House during free period and again just prior to the start of evening classes. During this time, the library staffed tables on the quad, offering snacks, giveaways, and a warm welcome to everyone passing by. In addition, new students who are part of the library’s Personal Librarian Program were issued a targeted invitation to pick up a special welcome gift during the Campus Involvement Fair or Open House.

On September 8, as the last library event scheduled during Welcome Week, Robeson will partner with the Office of Disability Services to kick off Woof Wednesday, a therapy animal visit hosted on the first Wednesday of every month. Woof Wednesday, which began in 2019 and went virtual for the 2020-2021 academic year, features therapy animal teams from PAWS for People. On September 8, Woof Wednesday will take place outdoors. In accordance with the focus on wellness and stress management, representatives from the Wellness Center, Athletics and Recreation, and the Division of Student Academic Success will also be on site to provide information about campus resources.

Zara Wilkinson