Approximately 3,100 students moved into University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa student housing facilities during the week of August 14 for the fall 2023 semester with few delays thanks to a new move-in process developed by Student Housing Services (SHS). According to a survey conducted by SHS, 60% of parents said they arrived at the residence halls within 15 minutes of their student receiving their room key and 86% arrived in 30 minutes or less.
The revamped process for new students who moved in on Tuesday, August 15 and Wednesday August 16 included:
- A university welcome fair and check-in at the Stan Sheriff Center for first-year residents
- Additional move-in times that spread out the number of individuals arriving and unloading at any given time
- Improved directional signage and a revised vehicle hang tag system to assist with wayfinding on campus
- Better utilization of parking infrastructure to reduce traffic and congestion on local streets
- Expanded two-way shuttle service for students and their ʻohana from the Zone 20 parking structure to the various residence halls and back
- Additional custodial resources and support to manage the large influx of packaged goods and materials
“After reviewing past feedback and reflecting on how previous move-in days had gone on the UH Mānoa campus, we were committed to creating a new and improved process to make the experience more welcoming, seamless and stress-free for incoming students and their families,” said Interim Director of Student Housing Services David Akana. “This could not have been possible without the support of a number of key university departments, who dedicated time and resources to help make this new process a reality.”
Parents pleased with smoother move-in
The efforts to revamp the move-in day processes did not go unnoticed.
“Mahalo nui loa UH,” said Wendy Paul in a Facebook post. “Our move-in was fantastic and everyone was patient and exuding the aloha spirit. Very impressed and our daughter already feels like she is home.”
Another parent who experienced move-in with their daughter during fall 2020 and fall 2021 anonymously shared that this year’s move-in improved significantly from previous move-ins.
“The process was smooth, people were helpful, being in a cool area helped lessen the frustration and emotions of everyone around us, the shuttle was great… and many volunteers were quick to help unload,” wrote the parent in a feedback form. “We were quickly in and out of the parking area, making space for those that came after us. Thank you for listening to our past feedback and making improvements.”
Welcoming new students to UH Mānoa
During move-in, incoming students, including hundreds of enthusiastic freshmen, flocked to the Stan Sheriff Center to check-in, connect with a variety of university resources at the welcome fair, receive their student housing information and settle into their housing units with their fellow peers before beginning their journeys as Rainbow Warriors and Wahine.
“This experience is totally new and exciting to me,” said Isabelle Barcial, one of the many excited freshmen moving into the residence halls. “I was not expecting to really move in [since I’m from Oʻahu], but I’m happy to make new friends, explore new opportunities and be able to express myself more.”
Another freshman, Taelor Ferreir, echoed the same sentiment.
“This is a new chapter in my life,” said Ferreir. “It’s definitely a step up from high school, especially since I’ll be able to live on my own and be more independent.”
For many out-of-state students, UH Mānoa presents an opportunity to study at a highly ranked university and research their interests in a place completely different from home.
“I’m from Massachusetts, and I was looking to study marine biology on the west coast, and I discovered UH Mānoa and its great program and thought, ‘Say less!’” said incoming freshman Hugo Bundy. “I’ve been looking forward to moving in for a while and I’m so excited to settle in and get ready for the school year.”