Student volunteers welcome Creighton’s freshman class on move-in day

The brand new Graves Hall is the coveted living space for first-year students
Creighton University undergraduates spent their Friday moving in to dorm life.
Published: Aug. 11, 2023 at 4:42 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Some schools in the metro are already open for the new year.

For elementary, middle, and high school students, summer break is about over, while some students of higher learning are familiarizing themselves with their new surroundings.

Creighton University’s campus was buzzing with excitement on move-in day Friday.

Upperclassmen who are part of the New Jays were all fired up to help welcome the newest class of Jays: The 2023-24 freshmen.

“They’re coming from all over the world, all over the country,” Creighton junior Devon Stoffel said. “In this next week, week and a half, we’ll make this feel like home. That’s really the end goal.”

But these student volunteers with the New Jays do much more than welcome the freshman. They do all the heavy lifting on move-in day.

“The families pull up and our peer leaders and guides go in the back of their trunks once they give us permission,” Stoffel said. “We grab all their boxes. They don’t have to touch a thing. We carry it up to their rooms and help them get settled in.”

For parents who have a carload of stuff their young student has packed to haul to their new home, the New Jays are a blessing.

“Yeah, we didn’t have to do much but show up and label everything,” said parent Kevin Fason. “That was the end of it. That’s a big bonus. I don’t have to lug things upstairs.”

More than 1,000 freshmen are enrolled in this year’s class. Almost all of them will live in one of the three freshman dorms.

Some of those students get to move into a brand new building: the recently-constructed Graves Hall.

“It’s amazing,” incoming freshman Ricardo Saucedo said. “It’s unheard of, at least where I’m from. In Chicago, everything is pretty old over there. Coming into a brand new dorm just tells how much the university invests in its students.”

Creighton University in Omaha welcomes over 1,000 freshmen this semester.

Creighton officials boast of the amenities within the new Graves Hall.

“Students in Graves will all be living in suit-style accommodations, sharing a room with one other person and a bathroom in the center [between rooms],” said Creighton’s Sarah Richardson. “Sharing a bathroom with only four people as opposed to some of the more traditional halls, sharing with 15 or 20.”

The Creighton campus is still growing, too.

There’s construction underway right now and students will be able to learn in new facilities as soon as the Fall semester.

“It’s always for students,” Richardson said. “It’s always with students at the center of what we do. It’s really exciting to see that continued investment in the physical plant as well, but it’s really about the student experience.”

Graves Hall is Creighton’s first residence hall dedicated to first-year students in 60 years.