The Class of 2026 spent its first moments on campus as members of the Cabrini community on Friday, Aug. 26, as first-year students moved into their residence halls, attended Matriculation ceremonies, and enjoyed music, food, and games to kick off Orientation Weekend 2022.
“Each of you comes here from a unique background—a unique family history, a unique neighborhood, and most importantly, a unique lived experience,” said Helen Drinan, Interim President, during the Matriculation ceremony hosted inside Dixon Center. “These individual perspectives are what make Cabrini a true learning community.”
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At the ceremony, students heard prayers from the Catholic, Jewish, and Muslim faiths that tied into the four core Cabrinian values: vision, respect, community, and dedication to excellence.
Sister Christine Baltas, MSC (ʼ66), Campus Ministry Associate, shared the University’s history with the new students and linked the Class of 2026’s arrival to Mother Cabrini’s legacy.
“From its beginning, Cabrini offered opportunities for a unique educational experience, an experience that can be transformational,” she said. “If you are open and willing to let it happen, you will grow as a person…you will realize that you can make a difference in the world. You will receive an Education of the Heart.”
Orientation Leaders lined up outside residence halls all morning helping students and their families move their belongings into their new homes, a “well organized” operation that ran smoothly despite the summer heat, said Ryan Hohvannissian (ʼ24), a Lead Orientation Leader and Computer Science major.
Some parents, like Clifton Pyne of Bucks County, said the Orientation Leaders and their helping hands were a unique Cabrinian touch not seen when moving their children into other college campuses.
“We’ve never had students move us in so this has been a nice surprise,” he said, moving his daughter Emma Pyne (ʼ26), a Nursing student and Basketball player, into East Residence Hall.
As first-year students settled in on campus and got to meet new friends from the Class of 2026, they looked forward to beginning college in a post-pandemic era.
“We’re going to college at essentially the perfect time, as we’re starting to lift regulations…it feels a lot more open, a lot more free,” said Dan Paradise (ʼ26), a Communication student. “It feels more transitional than usual because we’re moving out of Covid at the same time.”
Orientation Leader and Exercise Science major Grace Logan (ʼ24) said students told her they were excited to be able to visit their friends’ dorms without restriction and without masking.
The festivities continued throughout the weekend with icebreaker games, karaoke, laser tag, and a pool party. A morning and evening Mass at the Bruckmann Memorial Chapel bookended the students’ first Sunday on campus.