The first-year retreat will be a time to bond for freshmen

Freshmen+and+seniors+from+last+year%27s+first-year+retreat+pose+for+a+photo+at+the+Fountainbleau+State+Park.+This+year%2C+the+retreat+will+be+held+at+the+same+location.
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The first-year retreat will be a time to bond for freshmen

Freshmen and seniors from last year's first-year retreat pose for a photo at the Fountainbleau State Park. This year, the retreat will be held at the same location.

Freshmen and seniors from last year's first-year retreat pose for a photo at the Fountainbleau State Park. This year, the retreat will be held at the same location.

Laura Alexander

Freshmen and seniors from last year's first-year retreat pose for a photo at the Fountainbleau State Park. This year, the retreat will be held at the same location.

Laura Alexander

Laura Alexander

Freshmen and seniors from last year's first-year retreat pose for a photo at the Fountainbleau State Park. This year, the retreat will be held at the same location.

Jamal Melancon

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It’s that time of the years again when Loyola’s freshmen join the upperclassmen for a little escape from the monotony of school life to go to the first-year retreat.

The retreat, to be held from Sept. 18-20, will allow freshman to meet fellow first years and upperclassmen, who will be serving as staff leaders. They will spend the weekend at the scenic Fontainebleau State Park.

According to Laura Alexander, associate minister, the first-year retreat is open to 40 attendees and 15 upperclassmen, who lead the retreat with two team leaders.

“The retreat is based on Ignatian spirituality and allows students to be introduced to the Mission and Ministry staff. Students from other faiths, or no faith at all, are encouraged to come,” Alexander said.

Bethany Washington, international business senior, says the retreat is the time to make new friends.

“Students can see what the Office of Mission and Ministry has to offer to them, in terms of building and maintaining faith, while attending the university,” Washington said.

She further added that retreat offers a new experience each year because of new staff members that contribute different ideas and activities.

“There’s no telling what each new retreat agenda will entail,” Washington said.

Michael Paskevich, biological sciences senior, said this year’s retreat is emphasizing the post-retreat mentality and will host small events to further cultivate and strengthen this community that will attend.

“Retreatants are part of our community, and a community does not end after one weekend,” Pashkevich said.

Washington said certain traditions of the retreat will continue, but it will be different from previous years.

“With diverse and creative individuals that encompass the team, we are still changing things that allows for an outstanding experience that is always unique to the students,” Washington said.

Alexander said the retreat creates great memories for everyone.

“I think that the most beautiful thing that always sticks out in someone’s mind is the community that gets formed at the end of the retreat,” Alexander said.

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