NSO’s Impact: Alumnus and Students Reflect on the Impact That NSO Makes on Morehouse Experience

Isaiah Johnson, Managing Editor

Each year, Morehouse College welcomes a new group of bright and intellectual students to its campus. New students arrive a week in advance to participate in New Student Orientation week (NSO for short). It is a jam-packed week filled with laughter, tears and love from both parents and new students.

For alum and returning students who participate in NSO, it’s not only a time of reflection but a time to reach out to their younger brothers. For the new students, NSO is not only a time where they learn more about their new school, it is also the beginning of their journey through Morehouse. What makes NSO so unique are the various stories you hear from students, all sharing one thing in common: that NSO played a vital role in their time spent at Morehouse.

“NSO makes you realize that you’re not going to have a normal college experience,” Taylor McCleod ’13 said.

After graduating five years ago, McCleod reflected on his NSO experience and how it shaped his time at Morehouse.

“You won’t be able to understand Morehouse traditions without going through NSO,” McCleod said. “NSO is a rite of passage for Morehouse students.”

For Whom the Bell Tolls, Spirit Night, and the Parent Parting Ceremony are some of the events that Morehouse students go through during NSO week. With each event holding its own significance, they set the groundwork for the students’ four years at Morehouse College. However, some NSO events are more memorable to some students than others, creating a more diverse NSO experience among the class.


Photo by Jair Hilburn.


“I was completely unaware of what to expect from NSO week,” McCleod said. “The experience was great, but going through it at the time was confusing.”

For Kevin Tolliver ‘20, For Whom the Bell Tolls was his favorite part of NSO.

“For Whom the Bell Tolls because that’s where I really got to know the history of Morehouse and the hymn,” Tolliver said.

As a current student and now a residential assistant, Tolliver now gets to see NSO from a leadership role.

“I have a new appreciation for NSO; everything in NSO is tradition,” Tolliver said.

Those who have a chance to relive NSO from a different perspective leave a lasting impression on the new students that go through this process. Those lasting impressions can shape a student’s outlook on the NSO process and Morehouse for years to come.

“NSO is something that you will talk about for the rest of your time here at Morehouse college,” Tolliver said. “Take in every moment of it.”


Photo by Jair Hilburn.

As classes start  full swing here are a few words of encouragement. Enjoy your time at Morehouse College, remember your purpose of being here, and know that your NSO experience has shaped you into a future Morehouse Man.