Incoming students find family at Castleton

He loads up his shower caddy, grabs his towel and heads across the parking lot to Audet House from Babcock Hall. “I am a huge germophobe, and there is no way I can shower in a bathroom shared with everyone else on my floor. Nasty.” So Trevor visits friends in Audet to borrow a shower that has seen fewer sweaty bodies.
But that is the only concern the Texas native has so far here at Castleton. Like many students, Fuentes saw appeal in Castleton because of the sports program, football in particular. “The team is like family, I felt welcomed right away.”
Many from the incoming class of 700 freshman felt that when they arrived they were part of a family.         “We have a very healthy freshmen class this year,” said Emily Wiezalis, assistant dean of enrollment.  In fact, the class is so big that even with the new residence hall there were students temporarily left without a room.
Director of Residence Life Mike Robilotto said that there were about half a dozen students who had to take up temporary residence in two different hall lounges. “It’s never permanent,” Robilotto said. “There are always a few students who leave during the first week due to various reasons.” Robilotto said that it takes a few days for space to open up on campus.
Dean of Enrollment Maurice Ouimet, Jr. says that this is the second biggest class in the history of CSC, with the incoming class of 2010 being the first largest . There were more than 3,200 applicants for admission this year, which is a jump from the 2,400 applicants last year.
“Castleton is a desirable school,” Ouimet said. “All a student has to do is visit the campus and they’re hooked.” Ouimet said that as acceptance standards are increasing many students realize they can get a the same experiences and education at Castleton. That, Ouimet says, makes CSC more desirable.
Transfer students have also been increasing. “The phones are ringing off the hook with students wanting to transfer here from other schools,” Ouimet adds.
Not only is the class extremely large this year, but Castleton is attracting students from all over the globe. Students generally come from New England, with 70% in-state and 30 out-of-state. However, that gap is slowly closing.
 This year there are students from Denmark, Bermuda, Sweden, Peru, Honduras and five Canadian provinces.. Though sports are a big draw for the college, students admire other aspects of the college that will make for an enjoyable college career.
Freshman Sam Stearns was drawn to Castleton by the constant activities that happen on campus. “I decided to try out a Zumba class to get to know more people and try something new,” Stearns said. “It was so much fun!” Although she has struggled with the lack of familiar faces, she is still thrilled with her choice of school.
But the transition into college life can be more difficult than some students expect. Many feel that the idea of starting college is romanticized and that there is not enough focus on the tougher parts that accompany the excitement.
“I’m a big family-girl,” said Savanna Currier. “I miss my family a lot, especially my mom. And the dorm life is hard, getting used to living with a stranger.”

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