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First-years experience smooth move-in with bittersweet family goodbyes

<p>Peer Advisors and Mercer Movers Samantha Shadoff ‘25 and Kevin White ‘25 carry luggage into Plunkett Hall on Friday, August 19, 2022, to assist first-year students moving into campus residence halls for the first time.</p>

Peer Advisors and Mercer Movers Samantha Shadoff ‘25 and Kevin White ‘25 carry luggage into Plunkett Hall on Friday, August 19, 2022, to assist first-year students moving into campus residence halls for the first time.

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Caylyn Kelly ‘25 welcomes cars into a parking lot near Legacy Hall, where families will begin the move-in process.

Mercer’s newest Bears moved into campus residence halls Thursday and Friday with the assistance of students and faculty, who helped make this exciting yet emotional experience a bit easier for the newcomers and their families. Mercer is welcoming more than 1,000 first-year students to campus this fall, according to the University. 

Peer Advisor Caylyn Kelly ‘25 said helping out with move-in has been a great experience.

“We’re all in groups, we’re all together, and we’ve been cracking jokes,” she said. “I’m doing parking today, so it’s been really fun talking to families, directing them and also talking to my other partners right up the street. It’s been very fun.”

On Thursday, Kelly helped first-years living in Roberts Hall transition into their dorm rooms. 

Tamadge Morath '26 is living in Dowell Hall this year, and he said he's excited to experience new things at Mercer.

“Really, I had no part in moving in, it was all the move-in team and my parents,” Morath said.

Talmadge’s mother, Buffi Morath, said move-in was a smooth process, since "it was just drop-and-go."

“I think he’s gonna do great here, and in three or four years he’ll graduate and take care of me,”   John Morath, Talmadge’s father, said with a laugh. 

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Parents of new Mercer students work alongside Mercer students, faculty and volunteers to help move luggage into the residence hall of their freshmen on Friday, August 19, 2022.

Like many other Mercer parents this week, Buffi and John are parting ways with their child for the first time as they move Talmadge into his new living space. 

“He’s my only one,” Buffi said. “I ain’t said bye to him yet, but he has to do this, and this is where we wanted him to go.”

This weekend following move-in, first-year students will partake in Bear Beginnings, a two-day event designed to help first-year students adjust to college life, alongside their Peer Advisor and orientation group.

It is just the beginning of life at Mercer for these new students, who are the future of its long-standing community. 


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