Miami Regionals students providing 'rocking' assistance to first-year class

Written by Emma Price, Student Communications Specialist

Nick Jung workingWhen Miami University Regionals junior Nick Jung founded ROC&ROL, he didn’t envision writing letters during a pandemic. But it turned out to be the perfect project for him and its members, comprised of Regional Orientation Coordinators and Leaders.

“When we moved to remote learning due to COVID-19, the orientation leaders recognized the need to make a connection with our first-year students in a new way,” said Bethany Carr, regional director of new student programs and engagement. Carr and her team realized that uncertainty and isolation might be difficult hurdles for first-year students to clear.

ROC&ROL is an affiliated student organization with the Regional Office of Student Activities & Orientation (ROSA), which provides guidance to first-year students in the form of registration assistance, campus tours and through highlighting ways to get involved on campus. Jung created the organization as a way to extend the connections and friendships made during SOAR (Miami University Regionals orientation program) into the school year, by hosting events where members serve as valuable resources for first-year and newly transferred students.

“We wanted to encourage first-year students to stay strong and motivated during this time of remote learning,” said Jung, a community arts major from Colerain. “Personalized, handwritten card seemed to be the perfect fit.”

1,000 postcards in a card board box

With nearly 1,000 members in the first-year class, writing personalized notes might have been a daunting task. But true to their name, the members of ROC&ROL rolled with it, with each member writing 100 cards.

“The postcards had encouraging messages to persevere through this new reality and reminders to register for the fall semester,” said Carr, who noted that one of the primary goals of ROC&ROL is to help with retention. “We want to see all of our students back in the fall and would hate for these circumstances to affect their decision to continue their education.” 

“It was rewarding to know that we are serving as a resource and a friend to these students,” said Jung. “Hopefully, we will continue to grow as an organization and continue to be there for our students during both usual and unusual circumstances.”