Hamilton College offers three pre-orientation programs that provide a fun and friendly atmosphere for easing new students into college life. The programs culminate at an outdoor education center where several groups meet to do activities and spend time around a bonfire. These experiences allow participants to meet people from other trips prior to returning to campus.
Exploration Adventure is the newest pre-orientation option. XA provides students with similar interests an opportunity to explore a subject area or theme with some members of the College faculty. A variety of trips, such as those with a focus on history, wellness and the arts, will be offered. As with AA and OA, trips will be comprised of six to eight first-year students and two upperclass student leaders, with some faculty members along for the fun. Most trips will travel by van to local sites and return to a community center or church for cooking, eating and “indoor camping” at night.
Adirondack Adventure, or AA as it’s known on campus, is a great way to meet your new classmates, make friends and challenge yourself before the semester begins. In groups of six to 12, students spend a day on campus preparing for a four-day wilderness or camping trip. There’s a variety of trips from which to choose, from beginning hiking to intermediate canoeing to rock climbing. Students also have the opportunity to make friends on a trip and then the option of taking a Hamilton class together in the fall.
Outreach Adventure, or OA, gives students the chance to explore the area surrounding Hamilton while bonding with eight to 10 other new Hamilton students and two upperclass group leaders. Activities may include serving in a meal program for the homeless, working on a Habitat for Humanity construction project, helping with a summer program for children at a local museum or performing environmental service work. OA groups stay together in a community center or church “camping inside” in the area where they are volunteering.