Flint, MI—Students once again filled the dorms at the University of Michigan-Flint, pushing carts overflowing with snacks, mini fridges, TVs and more into their new homes on Thursday, Aug. 25, 2022, the university’s move-in day for first-year students.
Jasmine Robinson, who is majoring in anthropology, hopes to learn new skills as she works towards her aspiration to become an archeologist.
“I just want to grow as a person,” Jasmine said. “I want to put myself out there.”
With Jasmine beginning her first year at UM-Flint, what’s top of mind for her mother Lanetta Robinson is Jasmine’s safety. Beyond that, Lanetta looks towards the new connections that Jasmine will forge on campus.
“I care about her building relationships with students and staff,” Lanetta said, “and I care about her just having a university experience.”
Patrick McGovern, who is studying graphic design, looks forward to gaining new experiences and building a support network of friends. Just as McGovern is starting his first year of college, his sister, a senior majoring in public health, will be graduating from UM-Flint next year.
“They’re each pursing their passions, and I think it’s really cool,” said McGovern’s father Patrick McGovern Jr. “I got one more left…He’s a tenth grader at Grand Blanc High School, so it’ll be a couple years and I’ll be back here again.”
“It’s just nice to watch them go through this process,” McGovern Jr. continued.
While many UM-Flint students hail from in and around Flint, international exchange students Damien Huijbregrs and Sam De Bruin had a much longer commute. They both study business at Avans Hogeschool in the Netherlands, but they’re spending this semester studying in a country neither have been to before.
“We’re just really open for it right now because that’s the only thing that we can do,” Huijbregrs said. “It’s just like one big journey.”
Their semester here ends just before Christmas, but in the meantime, Huijbregrs said he’s looking forward to celebrating Halloween in the U.S., a holiday not commonly celebrated in the Netherlands.
“I’m gonna go for my vampire look or something,” he said. “What’s his name, from Twilight?”
This will be Gabby Weimer’s second year studying wildlife biology at UM-Flint, she said. She chose to study here because it’s close to her home in Grand Blanc and it’s affordable, she said. After she earns her degree, she’s aiming for a career as a zookeeper, she said.
“My daughter is getting a chance to kind of spread her wings and stay away from home, you know?” said Kevin Welker, father of first year UM-Flint student Roune Todd-Welker.
Welker, from Swartz Creek, Mich., said he’s happy his daughter can still easily come back to visit her home. He and his wife Lauren Miller both commuted when they went to college, they said.
“It’s, you know, some money, but it’s just for the on-campus experience in the dorms,” Welker said. “I wish I would have done it.”
Michael is Flint Beat’s multimedia journalist. He joined the team as a corps member of Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms to report on under-covered...
More by Michael Indriolo
Nicholas is Flint Beat’s public health and education reporter. He joins the team as he graduates from Santa Clara University, Calif. Nicholas has previously reported on dementia and brain health, as...
More by Nicholas Chan