College is a time to engage in learning and to discover your passions and interests. As you step foot on campus in August, you will be exposed to endless opportunities to learn about yourself. There will be numerous experiences available to you, from classes to volunteering to internships to personal development workshops. Another goal of LILAC is to connect you with the incredible alumnae network of Bryn Mawrters that exists across the world. Take advantage of these resources and explore. Each experience provides you with data about yourself and how you engage in the world around you!
LILAC’smission is to prepare liberal arts students to be effective, self-aware leaders in their chosen life pursuits. The Center includes a team of 15 staff members who focus on leadership, civic engagement and career and professional development. The developmental areas that the LILAC team hopes you will explore through programs we offer include social responsibility, communication, conceptual thinking, connection, cultural competency, implementation, and reflective practice. We have a physical presence in the Campus Center and Cambrian Row and welcome you to drop by at any time. There are no expectations that you come to see us with fully formed ideas about your future. Our role is to provide guidance as you explore and learn through meaningful experiences.
Please click here and bookmark this page to learn about and sign up for programs that we will run throughout the year. A brief sampling of what we offer includes:
Leadership and personal development through workshops, assessments, and intensive programs
Making connections with faculty and staff will enhance your time here at Bryn Mawr and the LILAC team is eager to meet you and work with you over the next four years and beyond. We hope to see you this fall! It’s never too early to start exploring!
Congratulations on attending Bryn Mawr! This will be a brand new experience for most of you and although it can be challenging, it is definitely an incredible time! Prior to starting Bryn Mawr, I wish I would have known that it is perfectly fine to not know what you want to major in. I was always concerned about solidifying my major and minor during my first semester, but it is important to branch out and to learn beyond of what you already know. Attending a liberal arts college like Bryn Mawr helps incoming students (and also returning students) to identify what they might or might not like in selecting their studies. Although you will all have different experiences and interests prior to your start of Bryn Mawr, it is important to take a wide variety of classes during your first semester in order to really take advantage of what Bryn Mawr has to offer. –Catherine Bunza ‘18
Mary Beth Horvath, Director of Student Activities & Orientation
Who’s Whoooo at Bryn Mawr – What I do: As the Director of Student Activities and Orientation I strive to create a vibrant student community on campus. I oversee the Activities Assistants who help me plan a variety of programs to help students develop healthy and meaningful relationships with others, learn about themselves, and develop leadership and life skills. Many of those activities also help students take a break from their studies when they need it. The Activities Assistants also help students learn about Philadelphia and all the great places you can explore and fun things you can do in the city. I work directly with a number of student led clubs and activities to help them plan engaging events for the campus community to enjoy. I’m the adviser to Traditions and work closely with the Traditions Mistresses to help create a sense of community on campus. I also oversee the Customs program, our new student orientation program, and work with the Customs committee and Customs People to help new students acclimate to the College. Find out more about the Customs program by visiting our website at brynmawr.edu/customs.
My majors in college: Music and Environmental Studies at Dickinson College Favorite movie:Grease! Favorite dessert: Strawberry Shortcake Favorite spot on campus: Campus Center
BMC club/activity I’d like to join: WHRC, Social Committee, Film Series… I was involved in clubs like these at my undergraduate institution. Tip for the first year at BMC: Be open to meeting new people, exploring new interests, learning about other cultures, getting involved, and ask for help if you need it! Everyone is here to help you succeed in whatever you choose to do. Also, explore Philadelphia! Philly is a city rich in culture, with world class museums and restaurants, theater, sporting events, and so much more. What I like about working with new students: Their excitement, enthusiasm, and ambition! Favorite thing about my job: Working with and getting to know students and planning events for the community. In my free time, I enjoy: Running, crochet, reading, trying new restaurants, watching TV, spending time with my husband Bryan and cats Max and Sam. My secret talent: I make awesome breads and jams and recently began making a variety of baked goods. I crochet stuffed animals; you can find some of my crocheted owls in various offices around campus. Nickname: MB On my summer to-do list: Plan a great Customs experience for the Class of 2020!
Starting college, like any new experience, can be nerve wracking and exciting. Often students (myself included) spend a lot of time fretting over the little things and trying to make everything perfect. Don’t. Things are not going to be perfect and there will be (many) hiccups along the way and that is okay! That’s what makes this experience so memorable. Just know that others are on the same boat as you and that you can always reach out if you need help. Be excited! (You made it to college!)
– Mehendi Siraj ’19
For pretty much all of you, college is going to be a completely new experience. There will be things that you will have to learn how to handle that were never present in high school. You will be pushed and challenged in new and exciting ways. That being said, you will most likely find that the plans that you come in with about how you want your experience to go are not the plans that you will have after your first year. Don’t be afraid to explore new topics or topics that interested you in the past that you never thought to pursue. You will learn things about yourself that you never knew, and that will greatly affect how your plans change. Let these changes happen because you will find that they are overwhelmingly for the better. Whether you come to BMC with a plan or vague ideas of your future or no clue at all, allowing yourself to be open to the journey you are about to embark on will make your experience at Bryn Mawr even better than it already will be.
-Precious Robinson ‘19
Congratulations on attending Bryn Mawr! This will be a brand new experience for most of you and although it can be challenging, it is definitely an incredible time! Prior to starting Bryn Mawr, I wish I would have known that it is perfectly fine to not know what you want to major in. I was always concerned about solidifying my major and minor during my first semester, but it is important to branch out and to learn beyond of what you already know. Attending a liberal arts college like Bryn Mawr helps incoming students (and also returning students) to identify what they might or might not like in selecting their studies. Although you will all have different experiences and interests prior to your start of Bryn Mawr, it is important to take a wide variety of classes during your first semester in order to really take advantage of what Bryn Mawr has to offer.
–Catherine Bunza ‘18
College will come; enjoy the summer! You’ve worked so hard to get to where you are now, it’s absolutely necessary to enjoy some time off between school. Don’t worry about choosing a roommate immediately, having the perfect schedule, or hurrying to make three hundred friends before you even step on campus. There are things you have to do before you come to Customs Week in August–outlined, of course, in these wonderful newsletters!–but take a breath, it will be fine. Transitioning to college takes time; it can’t be done purely through meticulous planning. Don’t be afraid to reach out to resources such as Deans and Peer Mentor Services, but know that you’re going to be fine. Seriously.
The Bryn Mawr Dining Halls are known for their delicious food. There are two main dining halls at Bryn Mawr: Erdman and Haffner. Being someone who works in the kitchen at Haffner, I can assure you that for people with food allergies or restrictions, many precautions are made to ensure the food safety. All the kitchen workers are required to wear gloves when handling food and change gloves every time they are handling a different food, and the kitchen spaces are constantly cleaned. Each food is labeled and has a list of possible allergy information (e.g: “Contains: nuts, dairy, wheat”). Both dining halls have a lot of vegetarian options. Examples of what the dining halls have to offer is listed as such. Erdman has pizza, a panini maker, salad bar and deli station, soups, ice cream, fresh fruit, various beverage machines, and more. Haffner also has pizza (but more variety of pizzas), toaster ovens, soup, salad bar, ethnic foods that switch around once or twice a semester, a milkshake maker, fresh fruit, beverage machines, and more. Oh, and both also have four types of water to choose from – bubbly, cold, ambient, and infused! If you ever have a question about what a food contains, just ask a worker and they will get the list of ingredients.
Welcome to Bryn Mawr College, I’m sure you are just as excited to be a part of this community as we are to welcome you. Today, I want to talk about placement exams. Placement exams are extremely important. Please do not put them off! It will be really helpful when you are trying to pick classes to know which class you were actually placed into.
Once you find your placement results, do not be discouraged if you do not place as highly as you thought you would. During your first semester, a course that includes some review is a great refresher before you get into a class with all new material. On the other hand, if you feel ready for the next step up, email the faculty contact person and speak to them as too why you feel you should be able to take the more challenging course. Professors and deans are a good source of advice when it comes to courses.
Finally, there is a period at the beginning of the semester called Shopping Week. During shopping week, you get to “shop” classes and see if you think a class is for you. So let’s say you do place into the higher-level class but you feel like you aren’t prepared, you can shop both the higher level and lower level class and pick which one would be for you.