Settling In

For the Temple experience, new students should step outside their comfort zones.

For the Temple experience, new students should step outside their comfort zones.

As documented in “While you were gone” [Page 1], the university had no summer break. With renovations to Pearson and McGonigle halls in progress and a plan for an unnamed residence hall project at Broad Street and Oxford Avenue, the 20/20 plan is well underway. The message is clear: Temple isn’t stopping now.

Scattered across campus, signs read that Temple is “planning for the future.” A new Research Science Education Center? Already set to debut in Fall 2012. A new architecture building? You’ll see it by Fall 2011.

It’s an exciting time to enter the university. The Class of 2014 may very well graduate on a completely different Main Campus than the one they’re stepping onto as freshmen.

However, there is a “but.”

Temple’s city location has always been a large draw to incoming students, and because of the city factor, it’s important that as the university builds, the university and its students remember the importance of Temple’s integration to Philadelphia.

College campuses often resemble their own miniature cities. The area of North Philadelphia that surrounds Temple is often called “Templetown.” The University of Pittsburgh’s Oakland campus is, for the most part, a college town. Penn State’s University Park campus is its own world. Not only can you tell you’re on the University of Pennsylvania or Drexel University’s campus by the schools’ signs, but “University City” flags fly everywhere. Coffee houses, bars and shops pop up, and, in time, it’s like no student ever has to leave campus to get what he or she needs.

Development around Temple has its pros and cons for community members, but ultimately, it benefits the students. Living in residence halls on Main Campus or in close proximity makes it easy to enjoy accessibility to restaurants, a grocery store and bars, but it’s also easier for students to stay in their comfort zones.

During the next few years, as Temple continues to grow, The Temple News encourages students to nurture their comfort zones as well. Under the Philadelphia Experience created by the general education curriculum, all students – not just incoming freshmen – are eligible to get a Philadelphia Experience passport, otherwise known as a PEX passport, on a first come, first serve basis.

Take advantage: With a variety of passes and coupons to Philadelphia destinations such as the Fairmount Waterworks, Philadelphia Museum of Art and Arden Theatre Company, students can embrace the city’s culture. And if you never get to your destination because you discovered some place else along the way, you are really taking part in the Philadelphia experience.

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