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Top 10 Tips for Incoming Golden Eagles

News Aug. 25, 2023

Welcome, Golden Eagles, to the new academic year and to what we hope will be your best year ever! Whether you live on or off campus, these 10 tips will help you navigate a great year ahead. Let’s get you started!

#1. Enjoy CU Welcome Week — everyone is starting fresh together!

Orientation Week kicks things into high gear. Here is your CU calendar so you know where to be and when for an amazing first week designed to prepare you well for what’s ahead academically, spiritually, and socially. We look forward to seeing you at: 

Friday, Aug. 25 New Student Arrival Day

4pm Dedication Ceremony 

5:30pm Orientation Week Check-in & Student Dodgeball 

Saturday, Aug. 26 Saturday Night Lights *Campus Tradition!*

7pm Event begins

Sunday, Aug. 27 Capture the Campus *Campus Tradition!*

7pm Event begins

Monday, Aug. 28 O-Week Daily Events

11:30am Picnic with a Prof 

3-5pm Opportunity Fair 

7pm Karaoke 

Tuesday, Aug. 29 – Residence Halls Open All Day!

3pm Church Fair 

7pm All-Campus Worship Night With Arise Collective 

Wednesday, Aug. 30 Classes begin & First Chapel of the Semester

10am President’s Chapel 

Friday, Sept. 1 Back to School Bash 

7pm Event begins

Wednesday, Sept. 6 Fall Convocation Ceremony & Chapel

10am Christ Chapel

Saturday, Sept. 9 Strikes for Stripes Softball Game

6pm Food Trucks arrive

7pm Softball Game Begins 

Monday, Sept. 11 Special 9/11 Remembrance Chapel

10am First Responders Chapel, Grand Rapids Fire Chief Brad Brown (Ed.D. ’20)

Friday, Sept. 15 Mocktails & Comedy Night

7pm Event begins

#2. Follow us on Social Media to stay connected to all that’s happening around campus.

With over 40 student clubs and organizations, athletics events, intramurals, chapels, music events, theater and more, keep your CU calendar on your mobile phone from day one to stay in the loop on hundreds of activities all across campus all year long! 

  • Follow @cuevents1941 on Instagram and watch for a weekly email for event information. Tag all the fun on CU social sites because we love sharing the fun moments with you! Student leadership, community service and music opportunities are endless, so reach out to the Spiritual Formation team at spiritual.formation@cornerstone.edu to find out how you can get involved.

#3. It’s not college without our Golden Eagles athletic teams, our NAIA Champions! All regular season home events are free for students.

Golden Eagle sports are a huge part of the CU culture. Check out the schedules and support our 20 NAIA award-winning sports teams, 500 plus student-athletes, and year-round athletic events, free for students. Be part of the Stone Zone, our official Golden Eagle student section. Commuters are welcome! 

Follow @cuathletics on social media to get the latest on basketball, baseball, soccer, tennis, cross country, golf, track and field, volleyball, wrestling, bowling and cheerleading. For intramurals, contact intramurals@cornerstone.edu. Athletics are a great way to have fun and hang out with friends while supporting other classmates in their achievements. Something for everyone. Make plans for these season-opening events, and go, Golden Eagles!

Saturday, Aug. 26

WSOC vs. Goshen 4-7 p.m. – Women’s Soccer

Tuesday, Aug. 29

WVB vs. Saint Xavier 6-9 p.m. – Women’s Volleyball

Wednesday, Aug. 30 

MSOC vs. Saint Xavier 6-9 p.m. – Men’s Soccer

Wednesday, Sept. 6

WVB vs. Lawrence Tech 7-9 p.m. – Women’s Volleyball

Friday, Sept. 8

WVB Tournament All day (ends Sept. 9)

Saturday, Sept. 9

WVB Tournament All day

WSOC vs. Taylor 4-6:30 p.m.

#4. The top question from every incoming college student is – WHAT CAN YOU DO FOR FREE?

Exploring Grand Rapids, the No. 2 largest city in Michigan, on and off campus makes college unforgettable. Here are popular ideas from students and places to play or just hang! By the way, all Rapids Bus Rides are free with a student ID. Also check out amazing experiences in Grand Rapids at experiencegr.com.

  • Play games in the Corum Student Union.
  • Break out a game of disc golf anywhere and often.
  • Work out at the weight room in Hansen and bring friends to spot you!
  • Challenge a friend to a friendly game of racquetball in the Hansen.
  • Hang out in the “world’s smallest amphitheater” outside the lower area of the De Witt Science Center.
  • Walk the riverwalk in downtown Grand Rapids.
  • Explore countless nature parks and walking trails in the Grand Rapids area. 

#5. Campus life is life-changing — embrace the life!

Whether you live on campus or commute, being on campus is a huge part of your formation as you live, learn and grow together. Undergraduate Residence Life is always available to help you navigate college as your home. And most importantly, never lose the Undergraduate On-Campus Student Handbook or your Bible! Read both!

Engage with your resident assistants — RAs — and other students whether they live on or off campus. We love our commuters who are encouraged to participate in all the activities and resources available to experience college life. Everyone learns from each other. 

#6. Student resources are a top priority to help you succeed.

College is amazing and challenging as it should be. We have got you covered with a wide range of services listed here. From tutoring to library resources to accessibility and academic sources, students recommend you reach out to these knowledgeable, passionate teams standing by to help! Two of your most important resources to stay on track all year are academic catalogs and the academic calendar

Tutoring is a popular resource, and the Center for Academic Success and Support is excited to invest in your learning. You will spend lots of time at Miller Library at Cornerstone University. We are proud of the extensive sources, both hard copy and digital, available to on-campus, commuting and online students. Student Accessibility Services welcomes your questions and are ready to provide you with assistance. And we hear the best place to study on campus is the upper Corum. The best place for groups to study together off campus or pull an all-nighter is the IHOP on Knapp’s Corner!

#7. We grow in Christ together!

CU’s beautiful Christian community is authentically Christ-centered and boldly, uncompromisingly Biblical. Here are a few of the amazing benefits of the CU spiritual life learning experience:  

Chapels. Prepare for bold, thought-provoking, inspiring and always Biblically grounded chapels and Community Chapels! Don’t miss Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 10 a.m. to worship, learn, share and refresh. Friday chapels are student-led, and you can listen on Spotify. Our chapel ministry team and special speakers will offer Scriptural insights for living a bold, Christ-centered life. Keep this very important Chapel Schedule

Small Group Bible Studies. Explore the impact of God’s Word on your daily life while forming lifelong friendships. We care for one another in small groups through prayer, encouragement, accountability, learning and support. And check out Seminary Thursday Evening Bible Class.

Mentors. Every student can experience the benefits of a mentor. Whether it’s a Cornerstone University staff member, faculty, upper-level student or alumnus, your mentor will be there to help you grow spiritually, socially and vocationally through regular meetings and shared experiences. Watch MyCU for sign-up details for a mentor. 

#8. Navigate college with health, wellness, safety and great places to eat.

Supporting your whole physical, mental and spiritual well-being is a priority. Students tell us they appreciate these high-quality, compassionate services and teams, including: 

  • The Well counseling services are free and available to all students. Licensed counselors can help you work through a wide range of mental health issues, including stress and anxiety that are common to the college experience.
  • Health Services is equipped with registered nurses for minor illnesses and injuries.
  • Campus Safety includes a 24/7 monitoring security team.
  • And a top service priority, no surprise, is Food Services! If you need a break from the Dining Commons, we recommend: Anna’s House, Morning Belle, Yesterdog, HopCat, Junction Pizza and the Downtown Market. 

#9. Learn to be financially strong and prepare early for your career.

CU’s Groundwork Financial Center offers free training in essential life skills like budgeting, financial planning, and how to be financially literate from day one! Advisors and courses are free. And it’s never too early to explore Career Services to map out your career development plan, learn how to write a resume, find Career Fairs and more, because graduation will be here before you know it!

#10. Get your Community Engagement Passport for all athletic and non-athletic events.

Get with the Spiritual Formation team or RA and compete for the most attendance at CU events this year to win a trophy for this new, competitive annual tradition. For every event your section attends with 50% or more attendance together, you get a stamp on your passport. Events are free, there are memories to be made and a trophy to be won.

CU has got you covered whether you live on campus or commute. Let us know how we can help. These are just some highlights, and we are praying for an amazing year ahead!

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