BOZEMAN, Mont. - Montana State University welcomed new freshman students during its official campus move-in on Wednesday.
The 14th annual Move-In Day is meant to help students get settled in their new homes.
Volunteers from the university and the community were there to lend a helping hand during the first of the three-day move-in period. Volunteers said helping out on campus gives them inspiration to do more.
"With each year, it is a brand new experience, and that is one of the draws for working on a college campus. I believe our students give us purpose and the folks that decide to work on a college campus are here because they are inspired by students," said MSU Chief Housing Director Tammie Brown.
The first move-in day can be a tough yet rewarding process. NBC Montana spoke with students, parents and volunteers to get their reactions on how their move-in day went.
MSU sophomore Stephanie Beeman volunteered this year during move-in day.
She said when she moved in last year it was just as crazy, but this time she was glad to be on the other side.
"Its kind of nice seeing how everything goes on the other side of it, not just the crazy, 'Oh my God, I'm a freshman,' moving-in thing," said Beeman.
Volunteers helped new students move into their dorm rooms. Wednesday was the first day of three for freshmen to settle into what will be their homes for the next nine months.
Freshman Sara Vanacht, from Missouri, said without the help of volunteers from the university and the community, the move-in process would be much harder.
She said unpacking could have taken her all day, but didn't.
"Its been easy. I thought it was going to be so much harder, but it has been a breeze," said Vanacht.
Parents are also grateful for the extra help, because leaving their son or daughter behind won't be easy.
"I would have been exhausted and crying," said MSU parent Sally Metz.
But people like Beeman were there to help.
"It was definitely chaos, just because of the sheer number of people, but it was still smooth," said Beeman.
Campus housing is at its highest occupancy rate in 25 years, and volunteers help calm the chaos while getting students settled into campus and the community.
There has been a steady increase in MSU's attendance. In 2010, attendance increased from 13,559 to 14,153 in 2011. In 2012 that number jumped just over 500 and another 632 students by 2013.