Batten’s Valencia Lagbo Helps Incoming Students Find Their New “HoosHome"

Part of this year’s summer orientation program includes leaders facilitating “HoosHome,” a two-hour, small-group meeting experience that meets on a recurring basis over four weeks on Zoom. (Contributed photo)

University of Virginia student Valencia Lagbo was nervous heading into her first session as a summer orientation leader. Mainly, she feared that a new virtual event called “HoosHome” – taking place over the Zoom videoconferencing platform – would make it hard to engage, and, subsequently, bond with the incoming first-year and transfer students.

But just a few minutes in, the rising third-year student from Virginia Beach realized she had nothing to worry about.

Now, more than a week later, Lagbo can’t say enough good things about HoosHome.

“It has been going much better than I imagined,” she said. “I find that if you are completely and utterly yourself, it helps people to open up. When you share and show that you trust them, even though we are all strangers, the orientees often quickly follow.

“People have been very receptive, and some have even expressed outright excitement to connect for the rest of the summer.”


Garrett Hall at Sunset

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