Monday, August 8, 2022

Some 1,600 new college students are coming. Here’s what that means for Williamsburg drivers

Freshmen and transfer students moving into on-campus housing at William & Mary in 2018. (WYDaily/Courtesy Stephen Salpukas)
Freshmen and transfer students moving into on-campus housing at William & Mary in 2018. (WYDaily/Courtesy Stephen Salpukas)

While some students are packing backpacks for the start of school, others are packing their lives and moving into their first dorm room.

On Friday, approximately 1,600 new students, including transfer students, will move into William & Mary with the help of their families and the college’s “Sweating for You” team.

The “Sweating for You” team is comprised of students who are assigned to different occupancy areas on campus to specifically help with unloading vehicles.

With all of those students moving into their new homes, there can be some traffic build-up surrounding the campus. Lauren Garrett, director of First Year Experience at the college, said the general Williamsburg public shouldn’t expect to see too much of an impact on local traffic but residents should prepare for the influx of visitors.

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“Some of the families come in on Thursday and stay the night,” she said. “We encourage them to explore the area. We appreciate people’s patience, especially as we hear a lot of stories of locals showing families hospitality.”

In the past, the move-in day had been directed through two main entrances, but this year there will be multiple ways for families to access the campus.

Garrett said locals can expect to see traffic coming in from the college’s traditional entrance on Richmond Road, as well as near the entrance on 199 and down Jamestown Road.

For each dorm, there is a different route map to help families navigate move-in day, totaling in 13 route maps which can all be accessed through the university’s mobile app as well as online. Move-in starts at 8 a.m. Friday, but Garrett said typically a lot of families start lining up their vehicles as early as 7 a.m.

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Only one vehicle per student is allowed at a single time and vehicles must be accompanied by a driver at all times during the unloading process. Over-sized vehicles, such as campers and trailers, are not allowed.

The move-in time will conclude at noon on Friday.

Traffic is expected to be heaviest before 8 a.m. with a flux in mid-morning and another surge toward noon.

Each year as the school welcomes new students, Garrett said it is interesting to see what items the students haul into their new rooms.

“Every year it’s a little bit different in terms of what we see,” Garrett said. “We see a lot of boxed fans and refrigerators, a lot of keepsakes to give the residence hall rooms a feeling of home.”

She said she recommends families and students to only bring the necessities when first moving in.

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“What are the things you need to be successful?” She said. “Those are the items people should think about. You don’t need your winter clothes right away, stick with what you know and then you can supplement later.”

Alexa Doiron
Alexa Doiron is a multimedia reporter for WYDaily. She graduated from Roanoke College and is currently working on a master’s degree in English at Virginia Commonwealth University. Alexa was born and raised in Williamsburg and enjoys writing stories about local flair. She began her career in journalism at the Warhill High School newspaper and, eight years later, still loves it. After working as a news editor in Blacksburg, Va., Alexa missed Williamsburg and decided to come back home. In her free time, she enjoys reading Jane Austen and playing with her puppy, Poe. Alexa can be reached at

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