On Saturday Night, as you’re just settling in and getting used to your Acadia experience, you will invariably have a large number of questions swirling through your mind. But then, you’ll be paraded down to U-Hall, sat down in oddly uncomfortable chairs for the second time that day (Matriculation being the first), and in front of you will be answers.

Not to all of your questions, and certainly not clearing up every issue you may have, but Arrival and Survival is designed to help you deal with university life socially academically, and everything else through song, dance, drama and comedy. It is by far one of the highlights of Welcome Week, and one of the things you will certainly remember.

I won’t spoil the show too much, but it’s quite a production: upper year students (Like Rivers pictured above wearing a REALLY small Eaton/Christofor frosh shirt) work tirelessly to present a wide range of scenarios that are more common than you might realize, and in the process a lot of questions you might be too scared to ask will be answered.

It deals with sexually transmitted diseases, depression, issues with alcohol and drugs, and even the crippling computer addiction that affects us all in some way (If you’ve seen how often I’ve been posting in the New Students group, I clearly can’t speak too well on this particular affliction).

And yet it never feels preachy: this is not an after school special, and they will treat these subjects with the right balance of humour and gravitas that will have people laughing and, more importantly, thinking. So when the RAs and NSOs are lining everyone up to spend part of their Saturday night watching a play of all things, be warned: you will laugh, you will chuckle, and you might just end up thinking about things a little bit more.

After it’s over, there will be a debrief session that will allow you to extend this into a bit more of a discussion. To be honest with you, this didn’t go all that well last year: it was boring and never quite got to expand on the issues at hand. However, I hope that this year there will be a greater emphasis on sharing one’s personal experiences, and I have heard word that this might be the case.

While there are other events that may be more interactive or exciting, no event is able to combine enjoyment and meaning as well as Arrival and Survival. Which is why it should definitely be a highlight for many new students to Acadia this fall.

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