Freshman Rachel DeKanick (second from right) gets a helping hand from her sister Amanda and parents, Brad and Linda, on Aug. 15 on new-student Move-In Day at UMSL. Rachel will major in psychology. (Photo by August Jennewein)

A student-guided tour of the University of Missouri–St. Louis last year sealed the deal for Rachel DeKanick.

The freshman psychology major from Minneapolis had several universities on her short list, but the UMSL tour won her over.

“I really liked the campus and all the people. It really made my decision very easy,” DeKanick said as she lugged boxes and plastic containers up to her residence hall room at Oak Hall during Wednesday’s new-student Move-In Day. She recalled being energized by the students’ passion for UMSL.

“It was all the stories about how they’ve shaped their lives and figured out what road they want to take and how much they’ve grown,” she said.

During the first Move-In-Day, several hundred new students moved into residence halls at UMSL. More students are expected to follow suit over the next four days. While new students moved in Aug. 15, returning students will move in throughout Sunday. Classes at UMSL will begin on Monday.

Move-In Day for Rachel DeKanick was a family affair, as she was helped by her parents, Brad and Linda, and big sister Amanda.

“This is our third and last child going to college,” Linda said.

“It’s a little easier this time,” Brad chimed in.

For Frank and Mary Puccini of Downers Grove, Ill., Wednesday was uncharted territory for them.

“It’s our first one so I’m feeling a little bittersweet,” Mary said as she and her husband helped their daughter Jennifer, a freshman majoring in business, move into her residence hall room. “I’m sad because I’m going to miss her,” Frank said.

“But we’re proud of her,” they both said.

Although he’s not moving that far from home, John-Mark Scott was excited to set up his room in Oak Hall. Scott, a freshman from Florissant, Mo., said with a house full of siblings the residence hall room at UMSL is just what he needs for a little peace.

“I just can’t wait to have my own room,” he said with a smile as he waited to pick up his room keys.

Scott, an accounting major and an Enterprise Opportunity Driver Scholarship recipient, brought reinforcements: his mom, Lana Gregg, and grandparents Lance and Carol Hellwig, with him to handle his heavy lifting. Scott is UMSL legacy. His grandfather graduated with a chemistry degree in 1977.

“I am so happy for him,” said Lana of her son. He’s not that far away and I never see him now, so it won’t be that different.”

Myra Lopez

Myra Lopez