Autumn in the Air

A new wave of students brings life to campus, along with hints of fall.

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There was a chill in the air this morning as I walked onto campus.

It may have truly been the first tiding of fall, or perhaps it was just a psychological response to the back-to-school season.

Everywhere I look, I see sings that students are heading back to class: from the newspaper ads boasting low, low prices on school supplies to the Mom bloggers sharing lists of bento lunch ideas (that’s the new brown-bag for the uninitiated) and simplified morning routines.

Nowhere, though, is the season more evident than here on the Forest Grove campus at Pacific. For the past week, small groups of students have been arriving for fall sports practices. Today, though, the freshman class is here en force.

There are about 100 tables set up on the west lawn of Marsh tonight. Between the residence halls, students navigate a series of check-ins, picking up Boxer swag, packets of information and other guides to their new campus lives.

Pop music beats are pumping through the air, and the campus is alive with new students and their families—some giddy, some a little dazed—getting the lay of the land.

By Monday, these students will be in their first college classes, their more experienced peers back on campus to join them. A week from tonight, the Boxers will kickoff the football season with a home game against Simon Fraser. And in another month, a slew of alumni will descend on Pacific’s Forest Grove and Hillsboro campuses to celebrate their alma mater with Homecoming.

The chill in the air is probably real—the forecast calls for a comfortable high of 71 after the last couple weeks of heat—but the weather has little to do with the atmosphere of excitement at Pacific today: Happy Fall!