Friday, August 09, 2013
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications (304) 696-7153

Week of Welcome to be fun, informative, relaxing for Marshall freshmen

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Marshall University is working hard to make sure its new freshmen are comfortable in their new surroundings when fall classes begin Monday, Aug. 26.

The best way to make them comfortable, officials believe, is to treat them to some fun, informative, relaxing activities during the annual Week of Welcome (WOW).

“It’s all about making the transition to university life smoother for first-year students,” said Dr. Gayle Ormiston, MU’s provost and senior vice president for academic affairs. “Week of Welcome is just that – a welcome to all freshmen. It is important that they feel comfortable with the university before classes begin. And it is equally important for first-year students to be introduced to the expectations faculty will have of them when they begin classes on Monday, August 26th.”

From Wednesday, Aug. 21, through Saturday, Aug. 24, about 1,700 freshmen will take part in numerous fun activities, such as watching an outdoor movie on campus, scaling the climbing wall in the Marshall Recreation Center, posing for a group picture, enjoying an ice cream social, tossing Frisbees, attending a comic show or building a Marco-themed bear.

The freshmen will actually begin their first class at Marshall during Week of Welcome. UNI 100, Freshman First Class is an introduction to academic structures and expectations of college life. Those who successfully complete the course earn one hour of elective credit.

The course is made up of two parts: (1) attending large group sessions and small class sessions during Week of Welcome, and (2) attending eight additional 50-minute class sessions, once per week in the first eight weeks of the semester.

“Week of Welcome and UNI 100 provide an opportunity for students to arrive early to campus, meet new classmates, and make new friends,” said Sherri Stepp, director of University College. “They will meet President (Stephen) Kopp at Convocation, meet their academic dean at their college session, and begin learning the things they need to know to help them be successful students both academically and socially.”

Back-to-back events in the afternoon and early evening Wednesday highlight the first day of Week of Welcome. The President’s Convocation, in recent years conducted in the morning, has been moved to a 5 p.m. start in the Henderson Center arena. This year, for the first time, MU officials decided to invite parents to the convocation as well.

The convocation will be followed immediately by the family picnic, which is open to all freshmen and their families and will take place on the student center plaza from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

Commuter students and students living on campus will need to check in for WOW on Wednesday, Aug. 21, in the recreation center. For any commuter students who cannot check in on Wednesday, there will be a short registration time on Thursday morning before the Freshman First Class session in the Henderson Center arena.

The complete WOW schedule is available at A new Student Success app will be introduced to students as well.   The app is designed to work on iOS  and Android-based devices.  It provides students with online access to the WOW schedule, individual student class schedules, and an interactive GPS-based map of the Huntington campus.  More information about the app can be found at

Here is a brief look at some of the fun and informational events scheduled during Marshall’s Week of Welcome:


Wednesday, Aug. 21

4 p.m. – Students are invited to visit the practice field and watch the Marching Thunder perform while learning the Marshall songs and cheers they will hear at athletic events.

5 to 5:45 p.m. – President’s Convocation, Cam Henderson Center

6 to 7:30 p.m. – Family picnic, Memorial Student Center plaza

8:30 p.m. – Screen on the Green. A movie will be shown outside on the big screen on the first-year North and South residence halls lawn.

9 p.m. to midnight – “First Nite” block party, Marshall Recreation Center

Thursday, Aug. 22

8:30 to 9:15 a.m. –Freshman First Class, Cam Henderson Center arena

9:15 to 9:45 a.m. – Class photo, Henderson Center arena

3 to 4 p.m. – Ice cream social and Build-A-Bear, Memorial Student Center

4 to 6 p.m. – Throwback Thursday games with Disciples on Campus, North South Field

3 to 5 p.m. – Freshman Footprints, get to know who makes up MU, Memorial Student Center lobby

5 to 7 p.m. – Revolution cookout, Christian Center lawn

5 to 9 p.m. – Carnival extravaganza, features live entertainment, games and food, Memorial Student Center, Recreation Center and amphitheater

9 p.m. – Cosmic Frisbee, Buskirk Field

9 p.m. – Hypnotist, Memorial Student Center, Don Morris Room

Friday, Aug. 23

3 to 8 p.m. – Students are invited to play video games in the Video Game Lounge, Prichard Hall 200

5 p.m. – The Veterans Memorial Soccer Complex opens with a 5 p.m. Marshall alumni game for the men, followed by a 7:30 p.m. game featuring the Marshall women against Campbell University. Tickets for full-time students are free with a valid MU ID.

8 p.m. – Comedy Caravan Comedy Show, Memorial Student Center, Don Morris Room

Saturday, Aug. 24

Noon to 3 p.m. – RecFest, Marshall Recreation Center

3 to 6 p.m. – Marshall football season kickoff party; students are invited to attend a scrimmage at Joan C. Edwards Stadium

7 to 9 p.m. – Coffeehouse/open mic, Harless Media Room, live entertainment and coffee 

RecFest allows Marshall University and the community to greet the students back to the Huntington campus for another year. The event presents a great opportunity for businesses and Marshall University departments and organizations to introduce and familiarize their names and services to the students, faculty and staff.

The success of previous years was a result of more than 100 exhibitors and more than 2,000 participants who took part in the numerous activities and demonstrations throughout the Marshall Recreation Center. Those attending can eat free food and sign up to win prizes.

On Sunday, Aug. 25, students can prepare for classes by participating in a walk-through of their classes with a representative from Housing and Residence Life. They need to bring their schedules to the Memorial Student Center plaza between 2 and 4 p.m.

For more information about WOW, contact the Student Resource Center on the second floor of the Memorial Student Center by calling 304-696-5810.


For further information, contact:  Office of University Communications
Marshall University | 213 Old Main | Huntington, WV 25755-1090
Fax: (304) 696-3197