Freshman Class Welcomed to Sion

Students and administrators came together to welcome freshmen to high school.


Zahra Parsons

Senior Lauren Ellwanger and freshman Ava Sheedy chat during ice breaker activities at freshman orientation on Aug. 20.

Sophie Gromowsky

The freshman class gathered together for the first time on Friday, Aug. 20, in the gym for orientation, led by administrators and senior peer ministers. The orientation gave the new students the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the school building, be introduced to school policies and meet their teachers and classmates.

“Orientation was super helpful to prepare me for the first day,” freshman Emily Schimmel said. “I got to learn how to open my locker and figure out where all my classrooms were.”

When students arrived at the school they were greeted by the sounds of the drumline performing near the entrance. A purple carpet led up to the north gym doors, lined with members of the cheer team who waved their pom poms and cheered for the new students as they entered the building.

“It was very welcoming, everyone cheering you on and knowing that you had that support behind you,” freshman Vivian Kuntz said. “It felt like everyone was excited to see you.”

The orientation took place in the gym, where freshman were seated in groups alongside their classmates and senior peer ministers. Along with Director of High School Campus Ministry Stephanie Pino-Dressman, seniors guided their groups through icebreaker activities and gave advice on starting high school.

“Our seniors told us to stay open minded, be social, and try as many new experiences as possible,” Kuntz said.

Students then listened to presentations from administrators which covered Covid-19 protocols, uniform guidelines and expectations for the school year. Sophomore Imani Cutler also made a short speech to welcome the freshmen and presented them with goodie bags put together by Sion Ambassadors.

“I think it’s important that they hear from a student’s point of view,” Cutler said. “It’s our job as student ambassadors to make everyone feel welcome.”

Afterwards, freshmen took part in a scavenger hunt designed to help them get to know the building. Then they were given the opportunity to explore the building individually to find their classrooms and meet their teachers. The final surprise of the day was seeing their lockers for the first time, which were decorated for them by senior members of their maisons.

Senior Grace Townsend shares a laugh with her peer ministry group. (Zahra Parsons)

“My locker had pink streamers and I think there was some candy on the outside,” freshman Addi Bowes said. “Knowing that it was mine personally was really cool. It was like they really knew me.”