Dear Class of 2025,
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. We are excited for your arrival and integration into this strong community, which to me and many others feels like an extended family.
As I have said to others, I anticipate your arrival with more joy than any other class. You represent hope and new beginnings after a challenging, and for some tragic, pandemic season. I hope that you and your loved ones have been well.
The entire Forbes staff is as excited as I am about your arrival! We are all here to support you, and we are committed to helping you navigate your choices and concerns. Each Forbes staff member has a different role, but we share the common goal of making your experience at Forbes, and at Princeton in general, as great as it can possibly be. For example, you will hear from Dr. Rashidah Andrews, the Forbes Director of Studies, who will work with you on all matters related to academics. She will coordinate assigning each of you either an AB academic adviser or BSE academic adviser. Your adviser is a member of the teaching faculty at Princeton and a Fellow at Forbes. You will work with your academic adviser as well as a great group of Peer Academic Advisers for advice on course selection and academic planning.
Our Director of Student Life (DSL) focuses on aspects of student life that complements your academic experience, including many activities and resources beyond the classroom. We are excited to welcome a new DSL to Forbes in early August, but until then Dean Mellisa Thompson from the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students (ODUS) to will be reaching out to you about housing. You will live in Forbes for your first two years at Princeton, where you will be mentored by a junior or senior Residential College Adviser (RCA). Your RCA will integrate you into your advisee group (affectionately called a zee-group) which will include approximately 15 first year students. Your RCA will help orient you to life in Forbes College, as well as your broader life at Princeton.
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 six 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.
In addition to first-years, sophomores (typically), and RCAs, there are also eight Resident Graduate Students (RGSs) living here, who come from a wide range of study concentrations. You will find that Forbes RGSs are friendly and interactive people with a range of interesting experiences. They are eager to get to know you so please seek them out and introduce yourself – I am positive that they would love to hear from you!
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). Their welcome video (as well as their video-tour of the college) can be found on the Forbes Website. This group of Forbesians arranges all kinds of fun activities and they are creatively preparing both in-person and virtual events to help you get to know other students in Forbes.
As you can see, Forbes College has an extensive group of talented 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!
Head of Forbes College
And Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering