By Megan Davis, UTC University Relations Intern
Sometimes it’s more fun to be social without linking to media. This week at UTC, students came out by the hundreds to meet new friends at special campus events.
Fall semester kicked off with Welcome Week on Thursday, August 16, as freshmen “stormed the dorms” on Move-In Day. More than 2,000 new students said “good-bye” to their families and “hello” to the college life. Over the next few days, the freshmen mingled with the upperclassmen at events including the Infamous 100-ft Banana Split, Campus Meet & Greet Breakfast, and the ever-popular Oak Street Roast.
To an outsider Welcome Week may seem like nothing more than an ongoing party, but the vision behind the activities and programs is to be exactly what the title says – a welcome.
Dr. John Delaney knows that coming to college brings with it the realization for students that “Hey, I’m on my own.” But Delaney, Vice Chancellor of Student Development, wants all students, not just freshmen, to know that being on your own does not equal being alone.
“We want to have a ‘come on in’ atmosphere for all students,” Delaney said.
Welcome Week is the key, with events hosted by a wide range of student groups to attract different types of people. As Delaney said, “there is no event that draws everybody in,” but the wide array of events offers students the chance to dip their feet into many different pools. This simple idea has been, and continues to be, a great way to get students engaged at UTC, he said.
Delaney encourages students to build their own relationships and enjoy college, but he knows this begins with a student’s first experience on campus.
“We want that transition [from high school to college] to be as smooth and successful as possible,” Delaney said. “We want to put many opportunities in front of students so they can pick and choose and start creating their own community, their own connections, and to make this place their home.”