The UC Merced campus is a thriving college community this weekend. About 1,200 students will move in to their campus homes for the academic year. Friday was the university’s official move-in day, but students will be filing in throughout the weekend.
According to Leslie Santos, director of housing  and residence life, about 75 percent of on-campus students moved into residence halls and suites on Friday.
"I think this was our smoothest move-in day to date," she said. "We had lines from time to time, but for the most part, everything flowed easily and efficiently."
Though classes won’t begin until Tuesday, the students now on campus have plenty to keep them occupied over the weekend.
"There won’t be a dull moment," Santos said.
Once residents are situated in their rooms Friday night, resident advisors will host floor meetings to make sure everyone is acquainted with each other and available amenities. A block party will cap off the evening in the dining quad. Forte Frozen Yogurt will hand out free frozen treats while students nosh on nachos and enjoy face painting and entertainment.
On Saturday, water games begin at 10 a.m., and the California Room will be busy all afternoon with various activities. Some students may also take part in bike rides through the community to get acquainted with the local bike paths.
Sunday morning, everyone will meet for a run/walk to nearby Lake Yosemite, followed by a picnic lunch on the Mariposa lawn back at the housing area. On Sunday night, residents and other students are invited to watch the movie "Up," which will be broadcast in the Bowl amphitheater after dark.
Monday is a big day for incoming students. Convocation, the annual “welcome back ” celebration for students, will take place at 1 p.m. in the Lakireddy Auditorium. After new students cross Scholars Lane Bridge, everyone will proceed to the auditorium, where Chancellor Steve Kang  will deliver his annual State of the University address, and the student government and Graduate Student Association presidents will deliver welcoming remarks. An ice cream social will follow the event.
Aside from classes starting on Tuesday, that is also the official Welcome Week kickoff. The Office of Student Life  organizes a series of events every year to welcome students back each fall, and also to introduce them to campus life and opportunities for involvement.
This year's main event will feature cast members from MTV's "The Real World: Brooklyn and Hawaii." Ruthie, JD and Katelynn will host a roundtable discussion on LGBT culture and confront issues of tolerance. The discussion will be from 7 to 10 p.m. in the Lakireddy Auditorium.
On Thursday, there will be a campus-wide block party in the Carol Tomlinson-Keasey Quad from 5 to 8 p.m. Students will enjoy a barbecue dinner and musical entertainment from Centrevol and other popular local bands.
View Welcome Week  activities.