Published: Aug. 23, 2017

There are two key sentiments Boulder City Manager Jane S. Brautigam works to impart as she and her staff help students and their parents move into CU Boulder residence halls during move-in week.

As the city official fills bins with electronics, rugs, mirrors and other college essentials and pushes them into rooms students will call home for the next academic year, she does her best to make students feel welcome and to reassure parents that the city cares about the well-being of their children.

“I want them to hear that from my voice—that their kids are going to be safe and welcome and our community will embrace them,” said Brautigam, herself the mother of two CU Boulder graduates. “We as a city are happy that young people are here to make us more vibrant.”

As in previous years, the city manager and her staff will join other campus and government leaders who are rolling up their sleeves during Fall Welcome and move-in week, an annual rite of passage at college campuses across the country that helps create a sense of belonging, permanence, interconnectedness and tradition.

This year’s notable volunteers at CU Boulder will include Chancellor Phil DiStefano, Provost Russell Moore and Colorado Congressman Jared Polis.

"As a friend and neighbor of CU Boulder, I’m happy to help students move in as they prepare for the upcoming school year. Move-in day provides me with an opportunity to hear directly from students about their goals and discuss how they are managing the costs of their education.

"While I’m moving boxes today, I will soon be back in Washington, D.C., continuing my advocacy to make higher education more affordable. Today I welcome all the new Buffs to this beautiful campus, and I want them to know I’m here for them,” said Polis. 

Altogether, about 1,750 volunteers signed up for Fall Welcome, with 1,200 of them focusing on moving students into residence halls, said Hannah Wilks, director of the CU Boulder Volunteer Resource Center.

Most of the volunteers are upperclassmen, staff and faculty who will ferry students and their families across campus in golf carts or help them cart belongings from vehicles to residence halls. They and others have many reasons for helping students move into their residence halls each year. For some, it’s about community service and sharing advice on how to navigate successfully through the campus environment.

For city staff, it’s all of that, plus an opportunity for team building.

“I like being on campus with my team,” said Jennifer Korbelik, a CU Boulder alumna who is the CU community coordinator and liaison between the campus and the city manager’s office. “It’s a chance to bring them up to my other home—to CU—where I spend a lot of time.”