Thanks for picking up the Reno News & Review’s 2019 Join the Pack Guide. As I’ve mentioned before in my letters, I was born and raised in Reno, and I’ve lived a little over a mile from the University of Nevada, Reno campus my entire life. As both an alumnus of and an instructor at UNR, I can confidently say I’ve never gotten used to how the place seems to change every year—and to the incoming freshman class, I’m sure the prospect of starting school is daunting enough. That’s why this year’s guide takes some big topics and breaks them down for the average college student’s ease of use.
One school topic that will affect freshman more than most is the recent Argenta dorm explosion. In early July, after a broken elevator ignited a gas line, the resulting damage to one of UNR’s newer dorms made national news, but thankfully not for any casualties. Temi Durojaiye breaks down what happened and what it means for students who counted on Argenta’s beds and dining hall during the semester.
Recent UNR graduate Andrea Heerdt explored a topic she found a passion for in college, and many students might think is beyond their means: travel. UNR’s University Study Abroad Consortium (USAC) has different programs, opportunities and scholarships for not just going to a new country to learn, but also to teach.
To some students, starting at UNR means—maybe for the first time—experiencing a level of personal freedom when it comes to their schedules, friends or hobbies. In between the tests, parties and the odd all-nighter, however, many college students can neglect both their mental and physical health.
I spoke to UNR nutritionist for advice on the physical side, and Associate Editor Jeri Davis explains some of the resources offered both on and off campus for students living with the realities of mental illness, either their own or a loved one’s. Spoiler alert: hanging out with puppies seems to help.
For the Arts&Culture column in the regular issue, I spoke to some dedicated current and former students about how to get in shape, by whatever standards they prefer, while balancing a full course load. Both require some heavy lifting, but balance is key.
I love the start of the new semester, even as an alumnus. UNR is undoubtedly a beautiful campus, but at its base function, its a collection of buildings designed to prepare you for life beyond their walls. It’s a big first step, and hopefully this guide will provide a little clarity in the face of new challenges and possibilities the class of 2023 will meet in a few weeks. Have a good year.