What Our Alumni Have to Say
Orientation Leaders, Student Program Specialists, and the Check-In Crew are a part of the Orientation Team, or OTeam. The OTeam are the professionals and students who staff two-day, overnight orientation sessions from May through August. As representatives of Penn State University, their work focuses on providing a quality transitional experience for all incoming first-year students, transfer students, change-of-campus students, and their families.
What kind of students are you looking for?
OTeamers can come from all walks of life and all backgrounds at Penn State. If you are a new Penn Stater who is passionate about your school and want to help share that passion with others - this opportunity is for you. If you are an established leader on campus looking to take the next step in your leadership development - this opportunity is for you. If you are new to campus as a first-year student, transfer student, or started your Penn State career at a different campus, and are looking for your chance to become involved and a part of something at University Park - this opportunity is for you.
You don't have to know everything there is to know about Penn State, or be the most naturally out-spoken person to be successful as an OTeamer. What you do need is the desire to help others, a willingness to challenge yourself, and the openness to learn and grow.
Here is what former OTeam members have to say about their experience:
- "Don't hesitate to apply, being part of the OTeam allowed me to grow more than I ever have during any summer and I made some lifelong friends along the way!"
- "No matter your major or career path, being a member of the OTeam is a beneficial job because it allows you to gain endless transferable skills you will need in the future -there's no job or internship like it."
- "I have thoroughly enjoyed my experience with NSO this summer, and I am immensely grateful for the people I have met, connections I have made, laughs that I have shared, and the people that I have been privileged to impact."
- "It is a incredible experience that teaches you a lot and also enables you to reflect on your strengths and weaknesses. You get to meet amazing fellow Penn State students and faculty of the university."
- [Y]our job will make an impact on more people than you realize."
What do I get out of being on the OTeam?
OTeam Alumni find that the benefits of being a member of the OTeam are greater than just the paycheck. Working in a fast-paced and challenging environment like NSO offers the opportunity to develop new skills, hone existing strengths, and improve recognized areas of growth. We asked previous OTeamers what the most important skill they gained from their NSO experience was, and they provided a variety of answers:
- "This summer provided me with opportunities to learn more about my work ethic and how to monitor/change that based on given situations."
- "The ability to adapt."
- The ability to be a confident leader and facilitate small group discussion."
- "I know leadership is a big part of it all but there is a different kind of leadership involved in the OTeam. I learned how to give hints or take suggestions without fully realizing advice was being exchanged, so it was much more friendly."
- "Ability to public speak in front of a crowd and keep their attention."
- "Working with hundreds of students and families each day was crucial in developing proficient customer service skills. We are all likely to work with displeased customers during our careers, and practicing listening and communicating with an upset client is a lesson worth learning."
In addition to these skills, many other members of the team felt that they had grown personally from being a member of the OTeam:
- "I learned to be more confident in myself as well as to be transparent and true to what I believe dispute what others may think of me."
- "Probably the biggest thing I've learned is that I'm more authoritative than I think, and I've definitely become a better public speaker."
- "I have learned to really control how I share ideas and to be open to other ideas."
- "I learned that I definitely want to work with people and helping them some how in my line of future work."
- "I've learned that I am more than I think I am, that I'm worth something."
As a member of the OTeam you will also increase your Penn State network, by meeting and working with new student leaders, faculty, and staff. You will also have the opportunity to learn more about possible careers in higher education.
The 2014 OTeam at our end of the summer celebration!