Ryan M. Bennett
Assistant Director, Orientation Programs
- Develops and implements Orientation for new students including first-year, transfer, dual-enrolled, student-athlete, and midyear entry students, as well as parents, family members, and guardians
- Oversees the development and coordination of selection and training for all Orientation student staff
- Supervises the Orientation Executive Staff and the Orientation Team Leaders
Orientation Executive Staff - Training Coordinator
- Major: Biological Sciences (Ecology)
- Hometown: Cary, IL
- Year in School: Third
- Favorite thing about Michigan Tech: I absolutely love the community! Everyone is so friendly and ready to help a stranger out, and the small town vibe of Houghton-Hancock really adds to that. I love seeing people help dig each other out of snowbanks or put in extra time to help another student understand material. I feel as though everyone has a general friendly and accepting attitude, and even the faculty are ready to help out. I do not think I have ever before felt so welcomed and comfortable around a group of people.
- Biggest First-Year Mistake: I got too comfortable and lax about my schoolwork. My first semester was fairly easy, and new friends meant new distractions. I developed bad study habits and time management skills that have taken me a lot of time and hard work to shake. Even if you "slacked" in high school or have an easy first year, it is important to start working on time management and studying while it is easier, to be prepared when classes get tougher.
- Piece of Advice: Don't be afraid to get out there! Smile at strangers, strike up conversations with people, join an org or 2 or 5! Those first couple of weeks, everyone is nervous, and the hardest thing to do is be yourself and strike up conversations with people, but it makes SUCH a difference. There are so many wonderful people to meet and opportunities to take.
Orientation Executive Staff - Logistics Coordinator
- Major: Mechanical Engineering, Theatre and Entertainment Technology
- Hometown: Johnsburg, IL
- Year in School: Fifth
- Favorite thing about Michigan Tech: The possibilities! In almost every way, there is so much to do at Michigan Tech. Of course, a lot of things revolve around snow, like skiing, broomball, snow statues, and dining halls that serve hot chocolate (it’s the best). But also at Tech, I’ve met people from at least two dozen countries, made fantastic friends, cheered and jeered at hockey games, tried my hands at metal casting, used an electron microscope, acted in a play, gotten an internship at Cirque du Soleil, and so many other things. If you really chase your dreams at Tech, it’s crazy what you can do and what people you meet.
- Biggest First-Year Mistake: Time management, without hesitation. No one really wants to work on homework when you could hang out with friends just down the hall, watch Netflix, or take a nap, and I certainly was no exception. That was all fine and good until classes really started going and I found myself wondering how I was suddenly so far behind. Getting yourself into a schedule (that actually includes homework) may not be the easiest or most fun, but if you can figure that out, you’ll be surprised how quickly you can move on to better things.
- Piece of Advice: Find your balance in all parts of life. School is obviously important, but make sure to take time for yourself as well. Just because you can fit 19 and a half credits, four organizations, and a broomball team into your schedule doesn’t mean you have to. The same could be said about a 18-hour gaming streak and prepping for an exam. Study hard, be active, try something you haven’t, and meet new people, but don’t be afraid to say “no” if you need to.
Orientation Executive Staff - Programming Coordinator
- Major: Psychology, Diversity Studies Minor
- Hometown: Detroit, MI
- Year in School: Fifth
- Favorite thing about Michigan Tech: I really enjoy Tech's small campus. It's very easy to get around without getting lost. I also appreciate the smaller class sizes. I feel like it's a great way to establish a relationship with your professors for future recommendation letters.
- Biggest First-Year Mistake: I am a really shy person so I stayed to the people I already knew and didn't really take the opportunity to get to know new people. I didn't get involved in anything unless my friends were involved. I slowly broke out of my shyness and started to join organizations that interested me regardless of if I knew anyone or not. I had and is still having the chance to meet new people and form new relationships.
- Piece of Advice: It's so easy to stay inside of your comfort zone but college is THE perfect opportunity for self-discovery and meeting new people. Don't shy away from something just because you're nervous because chances are someone else is just as nervous as you are!