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In the spirit of St. Norbert, the college community comes together to demonstrate radical hospitality when first-years arrive for move-in day.

A St. Norbert Welcome Means Everyone Pitches In!

Dear SNC Parents,

In the year 1121, tucked away in a tiny village in northern France, Norbert of Xanten started an order that today is alive and active around the world – the Norbertines. Norbert immediately asked his followers to embrace a spirit of radical hospitality and welcome all strangers into their abbey, giving them food and taking care of them when they needed rest or were ill.

That value of radical hospitality lives on at St. Norbert College. As you prepare to send your sons and daughters to college for the first time, or back to college as upper-class students, we on campus are happily getting ready to open our arms to our returning students and brand-new first-years. 

Those first-years will be arriving next week, in fact, for their Week of Welcome. There’ll be plenty of them: This year we have our largest first-year class ever. We’ve had to get a bit imaginative about making sure we can accommodate them all comfortably, but, as is the nature of big, loving families, we managed to find suitable places to house them all. 

But if we are really going to embrace and demonstrate radical hospitality, then we need to do more than just make sure students are living in comfortable housing. In the spirit of St. Norbert, we want to open our arms wide to these newest members of our family – and to their families, too. We need to make sure not only that our new students feel welcome, but also that those who love them feel supported and cared for immediately. 

Therefore, we want all of you parents and guardians of first-year students to know that we will be on hand to help the day you move belongings into your child’s residence halls. We have a group of dedicated faculty, staff, administrators and upper-class students who come together every year, calling themselves the Bruess Brigade. These people are happy to help haul belongings up stairs and into rooms. And by the way, the Bruess Brigade includes the president himself and his vice presidents. Everyone pitches in to help our students feel like they are moving from your home to their new home. 

So welcome, truly! If you have questions or if I can help in anyway, please do not hesitate to contact me. And until we meet in person, I hope you are getting as excited as your son or daughter to come or return to St. Norbert College. 

Father Jay Fostner, O. Praem. 
Vice President for Mission & Student Affairs

Aug. 16, 2018