It's Back-to-School Time

Issue Date: 
August 20, 2013

University of Pittsburgh supports weeklong move-in and orientation

Move-in week is in full motion at the University of Pittsburgh, with thousands of new students moving onto campus for the first time and upperclassmen settling in for another year. While one might envision a chaotic scene on Pitt’s urban campus, there is, in fact, a meticulously planned process intended to keep any chaos to a minimum. Known as Arrival Survival, the process operates efficiently. Organizers estimate that every minute, an estimated 2.8 students move in to one of Pitt’s 20 residence halls. That type of minutiae is tracked by members of Arrival Survival’s organizing committee, which comprises about 50 people representing 20 departments across campus. Pitt’s Office of Parking, Transportation & Services chairs the committee and manages the volunteers. This year marks the University’s 14th Arrival Survival.

Freshmen move-in began Aug. 19 and continues through Aug. 23. Running concurrently is Pitt’s Orientation 2013, which offers a large selection of activities for incoming freshmen and transfer students. There are practical sessions on book-buying options and college life, as well as fun activities, including the annual Ice Cream Social on the Petersen Events Center lawn. The merriment isn’t always limited to new students; upperclassmen may join a number of the festivities such as the Activities Fair—which provides an overview of Pitt’s more than 400 student organizations—and the Study Abroad Fair.

The week is an enormous undertaking. There are food, drinks, and ice cream to buy; 4,200 student t-shirts to distribute; and hundreds of volunteers who are tasked with getting it all done. Here is a look, by the numbers, at the breadth of the 2013 Arrival Survival and Orientation.

Students moving in: 7,100

Arrival Survival student volunteers: 765

Total volunteer hours: 9,180

Moving carts: 1,000

Residence halls: 20

Directional signs on campus: 257

Ice cream treats: 19,716

Ice: 6,840 pounds

Cans of soda: 6,240

Doughnuts: 3,828

Pizzas for Orientation: 275

Cups of coffee: 5,968

Pizza slices: 4,000