Daybreak at the dorms

FRONTPAGE IMAGE: Casi Scannell, left, and Sammi Hutchinson get ready to move into the SOU dorms Thursday morning.

Minutes after the Southern Oregon University dorms opened, David Deharpport, buried under a pile of his daughter's clothes, made yet another trip into the Greensprings residence hall this morning, following two students in official red shirts who volunteered to help.

At the crossroads of two halls, he stopped and looked confused.

"A or B?" asked Emily Focht, carrying two more of his daughter's bags.

"B," he decided after a moment's hesitation, and then trudged on to deliver his load.

This is Deharpport's third freshman move-in day, and it's still a challenge.

For the hundreds of other freshmen moving in this morning, the challenge is more than just moving their lives into a tiny dorm room. Before registration even began, freshmen and transfer students were lined up, sharing their nerves and excitement with their new-found friends.

"I'm nervous, but I think it's just cold up here," said Jessica Friedmann, a freshman from Clayton, Calif.

"You don't know cold yet," said Alysha Croak, as she stood in line next to Friedmann. "You think this is cold? It's not cold."

Croak told her she is from

Bend, where it gets really cold. She chose SOU, she said, because it was far enough away from home without going out of state.

"That's my reason too!" chimed in Molly Courtney, a freshman from Portland. "It's far enough away that my parents can't come visit, but you can go home for the weekend."

Friedmann has to drive five hours to get home, she comments with only a twinge of envy.

"I have to fly five hours if I want to get home!" Samantha Hutchinson said from down the hall. Hutchinson, a freshman from Alaska, flew in last night, but most of her belongings have been waiting for her in the truck she shipped down ahead of time.

"I just packed everything," she said. "It's bad. I only have like three suitcases, but I have like 15 boxes in my truck. My room is empty!"

All the girls agreed on one thing &

they're ready to move in and start college.

"I just want to move in and get it over with," Courtney said. "All the heavy box-lifting and moving up to the fourth floor..."

The transfer students were noticeably less anxious, like Matt Klimek, who said he only packed three bags for college. He didn't know which floor he would be living on or where to get his student id card, but he was still relaxed, even as his dad worried beside him.

"I fee very sad about the whole thing," said his father Bernie Klimek.

"No you don't," he told his father.

"Well, I will," his father said as they moved on down the line.

Out in the parking lot, Kyla ers was already planning her move out of the dorms as soon as orientation was over. The transfer student from the University of Anchorage drove down from Alaska with a caravan of friends and two bicycles strapped to her car, hoping to finish a degree in environmental studies and to get out of the Alaska for the winter, she said.

"I've been nervous about finding a place to live permanently and excited to start classes,

ers said. Move-in and orientation were just stepping stones "to finally get on course for a degree."

Staff writer can be reached at 482-3456 ext. 227 or . To post a comment on this story, go to .

Share This Story