How Mobile is Transforming Welcome Weekend

Every year, Welcome Weekends* at colleges and universities bring incoming students together for an introduction to campus life and to help them become more familiar with their new campus community. When thinking about the best way to structure, communicate, and manage your Welcome Weekend, it’s important to look at the role mobile plays today and how mobile can work to transform this pivotal series of events. 

*Welcome Weekend, also known as Orientation, Transition Week, Freshers’ Week or Welcome Week 

Students are mobile-first 

Nearly all incoming students today have a mobile phone; 97% of 18-29-year-olds in the US own a smartphone, according to Pew Research. More than ever, users treat mobile devices as their primary platform to access the internet for news, communication, entertainment, and more.  

How are students accessing this information? 

Mobile apps. Apps account for 89% of mobile media time, according to Smart Insights, and the younger generations are leading this shift.

When planning an event, like Welcome Weekend, it’s important to leverage the platforms students use in order to improve their experience as well as to help your office achieve its goals. Here’s how your university can leverage a mobile app to improve Welcome Weekend for administrators and students alike:

An agenda in the palm of students’ hands

Putting together and mailing out a Welcome Weekend packet ahead of the big weekend can be a headache. From printing costs to last-minute changes, a lot goes into getting an informational booklet just right. 

Instead, by creating a  digital agenda, you have the flexibility to build a schedule without the fear of schedule changes. With a Welcome Weekend app, edit and update your schedule at any time, with the confidence that your students will always have the latest information. 

Your students will thank you for using their platform of choice and eliminating a packet of paper from their packing list. 

Campus maps and landmarks for easy navigation 

Rather than sending students off with a paper map, equip them with digital maps and key landmark information. The sooner they feel comfortable navigating campus, the better! A Welcome Weekend app can help to get your students started off on the right foot. 

Interact, discussions, and sign-ups to connect

Your students are looking for ways to connect with one another. Make it easier for them by encouraging dialog from day one. Get students talking with interactive chats, social media, and, more! 

Empower students to sign up for sessions and activities they’re interested in and continue the conversation IRL. An app is a great place to let your students engage in a way that is meaningful to them.

Efficient to-do lists 

What do your students need to accomplish before classes start? Create check-lists which outline everything your students need to do, from moving into their dorm rooms to visiting the campus clubs booth. 

Moving your new student checklist to the app is a win-win – your students can keep track of their progress while on the go, and you have one less handout to distribute. 

Moving your Welcome Weekend communications to mobile is an increasingly popular and efficient way to greet your incoming students to campus life. By utilizing the platform that students know and love, you’re setting the tone as they embark on their academic careers.

Ready for an app? 

Ready to start building an app for your university’s Welcome Weekend? Get started with a template today!