Well This is New! (ft. Dordt's Community)

Wow, week four already? I can’t even believe that to be true. Dordt has actually been my home for four weeks now. To be exact-30 days, 720 hours, 43,200 minutes, or 2,592,000 seconds. That seems like an incredibly long time, from that perspective. But I literally cannot believe that that’s true! It seems like yesterday was August 19 and I was walking the halls of Covey to find my dorm and exploring other people’s rooms for furniture layouts…crazy stuff!

I am a freshmen here this year, so this is all new to me! Granted, I grew up in Sioux Center, so Dordt is only two minutes from my house, but this is still a whole new world. (Sioux Center natives, can I get an amen?) I’m still getting used to the experience of sharing a bedroom, getting to do homework with friends every night of the week, scanning my ID card and having an array of food selections three meals a day, and using community showers. It’s a new adventure, to say the least. But don’t get me wrong, I’m loving every single piece of it-even living out of a shower caddy isn’t so bad. :)

Prior to moving to Dordt, one positive aspect of the college I heard about again and again was their sense of “community.” I figured this was legit, but I was curious as to just how true it really was. If you’ll bear with me, and if you’re interested, I’d love to give you a few examples of how I have already seen this Dordt community coming alive in my first four weeks on campus!

 

To begin, I’m going to start with one of the things I find most amazing about Dordt College-its worship. I knew Dordt had various opportunities to communally worship, but I did not even realize how many that actually was. From Sunday night Wellspring or DNA or GIFT, to Wednesday morning chapel, to Thursday night praise and worship, to weekly Bible studies, to Monday night praise and worship, and so many others. The sense of community found in these worship opportunities is second-to-none. It’s such a blessing to be able to praise the Lord with other students whose hearts are on fire for God in so many different settings, worshipping in any way we choose. It sure brings an incredible sense of community.

Second, the professors will never turn you down. The first week or so of classes was introduction and syllabus week. On the top of every syllabus I received from every class I took were multiple ways to contact each professor. Aside from that, Dordt requires each professor to have open office hours for their students to pop in with any questions about the class or homework assistance they need. To me, that’s incredibly neat. Professors that actually care about their students? That’s a privilege students at a big university cannot get. And even beyond that, the majority of my professors said their office is open to students almost all the time. (Many said the only reason they have specific office hours listed are because they’re required to! How neat is that?!)

Next, the Commons. I’m going to be real; going to the Commons alone after a class is scary. Getting your food and trying to find a seat without knowing another familiar face there is intimidating! But guess what? No one will leave you out. I guarantee you, you can go up to just about any table of students and ask to join them, and no one will turn you down. We have all been that stray little freshmen looking for a table to sit, but no one, aside from ourselves, actually view us that way because we’ve all been in that boat! Every table of students I’ve sat down by has been incredibly welcoming. We all love to go around and exchange pleasantries such as, “Where are you from? What’s your major? What dorm are you in?” As it turns out, the Commons is actually a great place for communication and meeting people!

Being involved in clubs, certain departments, or sports teams has also brought me a sense of community. I have the privilege of being on dance team, in Chorale, part of Dordt’s Love Your Melon campus crew, in the FACT club, and more. The neat part about each of these groups is the gathering of students from freshmen through seniors. We are all respected the same within the groups. It’s super awesome to be able to build relationships with students throughout the grade levels. I’m sure I’ll be talking a lot more about each of these groups in blogs to come… :)

And lastly for now, the dorms are awesome. I live in Covenant, and I love it. Getting to spend hours doing homework with my friends every night makes it not seem like it takes hours and not seem like homework! ;) Living together with friends is definitely a new experience, and one I hope not to take for granted these next four years. Community is found even within my wing, thanks to wing events, Bible studies, and even our community bathrooms. :) My RA is absolutely awesome, my roommate is the bomb, and the girls on my wing are so fun.

 

Basically, these first four weeks have been a whirlwind-a crazy, but amazing one. I literally am so excited to see what each week to come will bring.

Thanks for reading. :)

-Hayley

P.S. Here is a picture of this year’s first GIFT I posted on Instagram a couple weeks back, a picture of my dance team, and a picture of my roommate and I because…community. Yay :)