Bon Retour: Welcome back to Glendon

Glendon’s Office of Student Affairs has put together a full week of activities under the banner of Le retour…Next Steps. The events are designed to reunite the Glendon campus community and celebrate the return of students and faculty to York University.

Staff in Glendon’s Office of Student Affairs have been busy working with their colleagues in Recruitment, Marketing & Communications, the Glendon College Student Union (GCSU), student clubs, academic departments, Chartwell’s campus catering services, the Glendon Bookstore  and just about every segment of the campus. Returning students were treated to free pizza, popcorn, hot chocolate and other treats. A key component of Le retour…Next Steps was the presence of Glendon’s administrative ranks and representatives from academic departments who were ready to answer questions and provide information to returning students. 

Above: Throngs of students return to York’s Glendon campus

On Monday evening, Le retour…Next Steps hosted a movie night. This was followed by an all-day open house on Tuesday in the cafeteria, complete with food and drinks, prizes and information kiosks of all the services and departments. The events continue today and tomorrow. 

The Glendon Gallery welcomes everyone for a coffee break today from 12 to 3pm. Guests will be treated to tasty pastries and a chance to see the current exhibition, Soft Shapes. On Thursday and Friday evening at 8pm, the Glendon Musical Ensemble presents its latest production, Stories of the Street: City Life in Song. Glendon’s traditional pub night resumes in the cafeteria on Thursday after 10pm. On Friday from 10 to 3pm, students can chill in the Glendon Breezeway, playing Wii and other games.

“We want students to know how happy we are to have them back,” said Aaron Doupe, Glendon’s manager of student affairs. “But this event is not just a celebration. The representatives of every segment of the Glendon community are there to answer academic questions, respond to concerns, promote available services and re-establish a sense of student life through student clubs and organizations.”

The throng of students at Tuesday’s Open House confirmed everyone’s desire to reconnect. “We hope that students will get involved once more and feel welcome,” says Irena Kramer. Together with fellow Hillel Club representative Daniel Abramson, she distributed peat plugs and flower seeds as a promotion of the upcoming Jewish celebration of planting trees – a hopeful symbol of regeneration.

Left: Daniel Abramson (left) and Irena Kramer at the Hillel kiosk

Fourth-year international studies student Clara Wong, president of Glendon’s Model United Nations Club, reported that professors have been very accommodating and understanding of the hardships confronting returning students. “It’s good to be back,” she saif. “The residence dons and everyone in the administration have been very helpful and welcoming.”  With the International Studies Students’ Association’s (ISSA) annual symposium coming up – this year examining Venezuela – Wong has her hands full and is already hard at work.  

“It’s starting to feel as if we had never left,” saif fourth-year English major Marisa Baratta, during the open house on Tuesday. “We are happy to be back and appreciate how nice everyone has been since our return.”  

Above: From left, Glendon students Mayer Elharar, Julien Oghia, Marisa Baratta, Jonathan Lebon and María López are happy to be back to school

“We are here to provide all the support that the students need," said Cristina Bregar, manager of academic advising. “We have been looking forward to having the students back and working with them to smooth the way to completing this academic year.”

“We know that the students need our help in getting back," said Louise Lewin, Glendon’s associate principal, student services, “and we would like everyone to know that we will do our best to help them succeed in their year and resolve the challenges they are facing.”

Right: Aaron Doupe and Louise Lewin hand out pizza

“The response to our call for participation in this week’s activities has been overwhelming from all quarters," addrf Doupe. “A truly Glendon-wide program in a truly Glendon style: personal, warm, supportive, collaborative. The enjoyable atmosphere we hope we have created is our way of letting students know how thrilled we are to have them back and to resume campus life.”

Submitted to YFile by Glendon communications officer Marika Kemeny