Annual 'Luggage Lug' welcomes freshmen to Grand Canyon University


by Catherine Holland

Video reports by Heidi Goitia

Posted on August 20, 2014 at 11:21 AM

Updated Wednesday, Aug 20 at 11:26 AM

PHOENIX -- Hundreds of Grand Canyon University students got up early to help incoming freshmen get settled into their dorms in an annual tradition called the "Luggage Lug."

3TV's Heidi Goitia did not do any lugging -- she was wearing high heels -- but she did help direct traffic as volunteers swarmed cars and unloaded them within minutes.

The upperclassmen taking part in the annual Luggage Lug were determined to make the move-in process as smooth as possible for the 5,500 new students attending GCU this semester.

"A big value at GCU is service," Pastor Tim Griffin, the dean of students, said. "This is one of the first opportunities that we have to serve our student body."

"We want students, from as soon as they step foot on campus, to just feel like they're home," one of the RAs told Goitia.

"We want to start their freshman year off right. We want to make it fun for them, make it memorable and just have a good time," another enthusiastic volunteer said.

Griffin said the culture at GCU, exemplified in part by the Luggage Lug, is something students and their families love.

"They want to have a great college experience, a positive one, one that allow them to live out their values," he said.

Fall move-in continues through Friday.

GCU is a private Christian university located at 33rd Avenue and Camelback Road in Phoenix. Experiencing tremendous growth in recent years -- so much that three new dorms opened this semester and four more are being built -- the university boasts an enrollment of more than 31,000.