‘Home away from home,’ Texas Tech students move in

Published: Aug. 14, 2022 at 7:38 AM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Texas Tech students started moving into their dorms on Friday. This is the start of the next chapter of their life, but can be very emotional and scary.

“Nervous, stressed, yeah,” student Wendi Aung said.

As they move in all their clothes, decorations and necessities, it is a chance to think about the excitement the future holds.

“I’m ready for a new change, a new chapter, a new change of scenery pretty much,” student Turner Lee said.

Turner Lee had help from his sister, Parker Lee, who is also a Red Raider.

“I’ve really enjoyed my experience and I’m just ready to have him closer, and hopefully make a lot of the similar memories and experiences that I’ve had,” Parker Lee said.

Their hometown is seven hours away, so making Lubbock feel like home is important to them.

“From the moment that I’ve stepped on campus, I have felt so welcome, and everybody up here is so friendly, and you really do find your family up here,” Parker Lee said.

They are not the only ones feeling welcome at Texas Tech.

Many students come from hours away; Lubbock is known for welcoming in Red Raiders.

“I just really like the atmosphere, and everyone that I’ve met here is super nice and friendly,” student Kara Sekula said.

The senior managing director for University Student Housing, Tanya Massey, says this town has had the best environment for these young adults.

“It has felt like home, and I feel like that’s a lot of the West Texas vibe,” Massey said. “We want people to feel comfortable, we want this to be your home away from home.”

Massey says her job is to make sure parents and students both feel comfortable here.

“This is the kickoff of your college career, and so it’s setting up this new home that’s going to be your space that when you’re done with classes, or having a hard day this is going to be your safe space,” Massey said.

To get the room perfect, these students take quite some time getting their dorms decorated. Sekula spent four hours perfecting her room.

“It was really fun, it was kind of like a fresh start getting to start over with the new room and stuff,” Sekula said.

Aung spent some time making her space feel like home.

“It’s very exciting, get to make it look like home, put some of my pictures up, picture frames, and things like that,” Aung said.

This year, students select when they want to move in based on a timeslot. This practice was adopted at the beginning of the pandemic and it has stuck around.

“It allows for a much easier process for our families to come in, the parking lots aren’t as crowded, the elevators don’t have long lines, it spreads move in out across a 10-day period,” Massey said.

She says it also helps all of Lubbock because students are not buying groceries all at once.

Massey says these next few weeks students will feel many emotions, from being homesick to afraid they have made the right decision. She recommends getting connected on campus by going to Welcome Week events and getting involved in student organizations.

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