Nearly 1,750 Marshall University freshmen experienced the WOW factor last week on the Huntington campus. They learned about college life during the Week of Welcome (WOW), and this week the Class of 2016 began the process of learning a lot more with the start of fall classes.
“They’ve been given a great deal of information and advice to digest that will help them not only in the first few days of their college lives, but throughout the next four years,” said Dr. Gayle Ormiston, Marshall’s provost and senior vice president for academic affairs. “It was a very educational and – hopefully – fun week for the students, and we believe they are eager to get started.”
Among the many highlights of the week, Ormiston said, were the President’s Freshman Convocation at Cam Henderson Center, the group photo taken in the circle outside the Drinko Library, and the support the students received from their families.
The family picnic on Wednesday was a huge success. Cheryl King, operations manager with Sodexo, said the estimated 2,200-2,300 students and their families consumed about 1,800 hamburgers and 2,300 hot dogs during the 90-minute event. The Marching Thunder, the largest band in MU history with 330 members, performed on Buskirk Field and the group Jabberwocky performed on the Memorial Student Center plaza.
“We’ve gotten really good feedback about the picnic and other activities,” said Dr. Corley Dennison, associate vice president for academic affairs and dean of undergraduate studies.
MU President Stephen J. Kopp spoke at the convocation, along with Ormiston, Head Football Coach Doc Holliday, Head Men’s Basketball Coach Tom Herrion and Student Body President Ray Harrell Jr. In his address to the freshmen, Kopp explained the importance of obtaining a college degree, and urged them to finish what they start. He also talked about the power of preparation, the importance of reading and the merits of hard work..
Entering college, he said, represents “an unparalleled chapter in your life.”
“You each stand at the defining moment of your life,” he said. “We believe in you; hopefully, you believe in yourself.”
Dennison said 1,745 students registered for UNI 100, Freshman First Class, this fall. Some 1,600 took part in the convocation. UNI 100 is an integral part of Week of Welcome. It is an introduction to academic structures and expectations of college life, and literally is the first class most freshmen will take at Marshall. Successful completion of the course earns one hour of elective credit.
Because they were concerned with the freshmen remaining in large groups during Week of Welcome, Marshall officials changed the format this year. Instead of keeping them in their large college groups, they divided them into UNI 100 classroom sessions of anywhere from 25 to 40 students. In all, there were 57 sessions.
“We were concerned about the large groups and we tried to address that,” said Sherri Stepp, director of University College. “I think the new format worked.”
Marshall also added 80 volunteer peer mentors to assist session facilitators this year. The mentors were all Marshall students, mostly undergraduate.
“The peer mentors assisted the facilitators and added credibility to what the facilitators were saying,” Dennison said. “Plus, the mentors will send e-mails to students this week, making sure everything is ok and to see if they need anything.”
Photos: (Above) Hundreds of freshmen and their families took part in the
Week of Welcome Family Picnic Wednesday, Aug. 22, on the Memorial Student Center
plaza. Photo by Tyler Kes/Marshall University. (Middle) Trombone players
from the Marching Thunder perform Wednesday, Aug. 22, during the family picnic
on Buskirk Field. Photo by Rick Haye/Marshall University. (Below)
Marshall freshmen wearing matching t-shirts representing their colleges listen
to a speaker Thursday, Aug. 23, during the President’s Freshman Convocation at
Henderson Center. Photo by Rick Haye/Marshall University.
|Return to newsletter front page.|
The Office of University Communications publishes the e-newsletter, "We Are...Marshall" for the university community.
To suggest a story idea, please contact the editor, Pat Dickson, on the South Charleston campus. The current issue contains the deadline date for the next issue.
To read the newsletter online for issues prior to May 6, 2010, you need the Adobe Acrobat Reader.