Auburn University has announced changes to its annual summer orientation program, Camp War Eagle, that will see students participate in planned events from home. The change comes as universities continue to chart a course forward amid the coronavirus pandemic and social distancing guidelines.
Camp War Eagle is an introductory program for incoming freshmen students at Auburn. In-person instruction and other programs were canceled for Auburn beginning mid-march and running through June.
A university email was sent to all incoming student outlining the new approach to summer orientation, including plans for an online orientation module and virtual Tiger-Talk meetings with orientation leaders. The virtual sessions will bring together small groups of students to learn the ins and outs of their university, while separate individual sessions will be scheduled for student academic advising meetings.
“The Tiger-Talks are small group meetings with eight to ten incoming freshman where you’ll learn about Auburn and many of the resources that are here for you,” said Melissa Dunn, assistant director of orientation programs. “The list of topics include things like your Tiger Card and where you can use it, to what dining locations we have on campus, where to park and then what you can do at the recreation and wellness center.”
Typically the final component of the orientation program is an in-person introduction to the Auburn campus, but with so much still to be determined around COVID-19 and when students can return to campuses, Auburn remains in a holding pattern on campus tours. University officials are aiming to provide a one-day, on-campus session in July if the COVID-19 pandemic situation allows, but in the event campus tours aren’t possible, that portion of orientation will be canceled.
Camp War Eagle has traditionally hosted a parent and family orientation as well, but no decision has been made regarding hosting this aspect of the program.
Auburn has slashed the price of the orientation program in half to $75 to account for the move to online and remote sessions. The fee will also be applied to students’ fall semester bill, meaning no payment is required when signing up for sessions.