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Guess what day it is? Move-in Day @ UMES

  • Wednesday, August 21, 2013

    PRINCESS ANNE, MD - (Aug. 21, 2013) - The Harry Potter generation that descended on UMES Wednesday morning must have felt as though the campus was the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

    Dr. Bell helps a Court Plaza freshman move in.

    Photo by Jim Glovier

    A rare, late-summer fog enshrouded lower Delmarva just as early arriving freshmen prepared to move into residence halls.

    The first freshman and his family in the parking lot adjacent to Nuttle Hall was Corey Bell of Scotch Plains, N.J., which they left at 2:30 a.m. to make the trek to Princess Anne.

    Bell was experiencing the usual emotions of first-year college students moving away from home.

    "I'm a bit nervous, but I'm also excited," he said.

    Bell, who plans to major in engineering, picked UMES because he "wanted to try something different. This is a lot different than New Jersey. I'm relaxed here."

    Bell's mother, Jennifer, said she, too, was "excited for him to go away from home. It means he's starting to grow up, and I'm proud of him. I think he'll do just fine."

    The Bells were familiar with UMES; several of Corey's cousins are alumni. He'll be a fourth-generation college student in his immediate family.

    "We feel like this is just the right fit for Corey," said Howard Bell, his father. "We're very comfortable with him coming here."

    UMES President Juliette Bell, no relation to the New Jersey Bells, was at Court Plaza Hall early greeting new students and helping a few get settled in.

    "It's important for me to be here … and meet our new students," Bell said. "This is always an exciting day."

    Jason Browne of Hempstead, N.Y. was among the lucky early arrivals getting a helping hand from Dr. Bell, who quickly struck up a rapport with his parents, sister and maternal grandmother.

    "She is so down-to-earth," Sondra Browne said of Dr. Bell. "Her being here, embracing us - and him, quieted our spirit."

    The Brownes posed for Kodak-moment family photos with Dr. Bell in Jason's third-floor room.

    Browne said he considered two other colleges but chose UMES to study business because he got a vibe that the campus was "close-knit, family oriented. I'm a family-oriented kind of guy, as you can see."

    Was he at all apprehensive?

    "It's all happening so fast," Browne said. "I'll be fine."

    UMES student leaders and athletes were out in full force, helping moms and dads and freshmen haul Rubbermaid tubs, flat screen TVs, dorm refrigerators, ironing boards and mirrors into the new "home-away-from-home" digs.

    Sophomore Seth Ward was among those enthusiastically lending a hand.

    "It's been really gratifying getting to meet the new Hawks," he said. "I wish I had gotten help like this last year, when I moved in."

    Bill Robinson , director, public relations (410) 621-2355