A Welcome Message from Maria Garlock, Head of Forbes College

July 1, 2022

To our newest Forbesians,

Greetings from Forbes College! I am the Head of Forbes, and also a Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, and it is my great pleasure to be one of the first to welcome you to Princeton and to Forbes!  I am excited that you have been assigned to Forbes as your residential college, which I hope will serve as your “home away from home” during your time at Princeton.  Later this month the Housing Office will provide your specific college room and, if applicable, roommate assignment, but I wanted to reach out now with a very warm and enthusiastic welcome to Forbes!

The entire Forbes staff is as excited as I am to meet you in person during move-in on August 26! The mission of Forbes College is to support our students, and we are committed to helping you navigate your academic and personal journey at Princeton. Each member of the Forbes staff has a different role, but we share the common goal of making your college experience as great as it can possibly be.

Over the summer you will be hearing from your College Dean and the Assistant Dean of Forbes College. The College Dean oversees the academic progress of all Forbes students to graduation and works with me and the staff to cultivate the intellectual and social community of our college. The Assistant Dean of Forbes College works closely with first-years and sophomores, as well as your Peer Academic Advisers (PAA) and your AB or BSE Faculty Adviser, on all matters related to academics. This team of advisers will provide you with outstanding guidance and support for all aspects of course selection and academic planning.

The Forbes Director of Student Life (DSL) focuses on the many aspects of student life that complement your academic experience, including activities and resources beyond the classroom. One of the first people you will meet when you move in to Forbes will be your Residential College Adviser (RCA), who will be reaching out to you this summer.  RCAs are carefully selected juniors and seniors who live in Forbes and oversee your advisee group (affectionately called a zee-group) of approximately 15 first-year students. Your RCA will help orient you to life in Forbes College, as well as your broader life at Princeton.  Working closely with the DSL and your RCA will be a new member of our professional staff, the Residential Life Coordinator (RLC), who will live in Forbes to support and enhance your residential and co-curricular experience while promoting student health, safety and well-being.

What does Forbes College look like?  Forbes College is located at the western edge of campus, overlooking Princeton’s Springdale Golf course. Across the greens, you can see the Gothic towers of Princeton’s Graduate College. Of the seven residential colleges, we definitely have the best views and the largest wide-open outdoor space (click here for a photo of the Forbes backyard)!  The main building of Forbes College was originally the Princeton Inn, a hotel built during the Roaring Twenties, and our college still has a bit of an “Inn” flavor. While on a map Forbes appears as the furthest from the center of campus compared to other residential colleges, it is only a two-minute walk further than the next runner up!  Many of us see this location as ideal: When we cross Alexander Street after a busy day of classes, Forbesians – more than their classmates at other colleges – “go home” to the Inn.  The views and ambiance are therapeutic, enhancing a feeling of home and family. Long-time Forbesians are convinced that they wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.

There are also eight Resident Graduate Students (RGS) living in Forbes who contribute to the social fabric of our community in many ways including study breaks, museum trips, movie nights, and local hikes. Forbes RGSs are friendly and interactive people with a range of interesting experiences.

Because Forbes is of the students and for the students, many of our social activities are organized by the students – specifically, by the Forbes College Council (FCC). The FCC will be sending you a welcome message of its own later this summer, but in the meantime, feel free to browse our video archives to see video tours of dorm and social spaces as well as events in and around the college on the Forbes Website. The FCC arranges all kinds of fun activities and they are creatively planning events to help you get to know other students in Forbes this fall.

As you can see, Forbes College has an extensive group of talented and caring people who are here to help you settle in and get the most out of your Princeton experience. All of us look forward to meeting you and welcoming you to Forbes. In the meantime, have a wonderful summer!


Maria E. Moreyra Garlock

Head of Forbes College

And Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering