By Gaye Hill
The Class of 2016 moved into Meredith College’s residence halls on Saturday, August 11, 2012, getting their first taste of the friendly community spirit that is a hallmark of the College. And while the entire campus came out to welcome first year students to their new home, a significant part of that greeting came from current Meredith students, many of whom recalled the excitement and challenges of their own move-in day.
Chief Student Advisor Brittany Murray, ’13, said she remembers pulling into the front drive at Meredith and feeling the excitement on campus right away.
“Everyone was smiling and welcoming me to Meredith. I remember looking around as I moved into my residence hall and thinking, ‘These girls are going to be my best friends,” said Murray. “I also remember the nervous feeling in the pit of my stomach, but it soon disappeared as I began moving my boxes inside and getting to know the people who would be living with me throughout my freshmen year,” continued Murray.
First Year Experience Director Chrissie Bumgardner said that Move-In Day is designed to provide a warm and energetic welcome, good information, and strong support as students move into their new home.
“Because it’s our new students’ first official day as members of the Meredith community, we want to make sure it is a memorable one,” said Bumgardner. “We do this in many ways, ranging from the colorful balloon arch and group of cheering student leaders at the front gate, to personal visits and gifts from their student advisors, to the Daisy Seed Ceremony and a family barbecue at the end of the day."
Click here to view a video of Move-In Day
Five groups of students were in place to help new students transition smoothly to Meredith: Student Advisors, Adult and Transfer Advisors, Orientation Crew, Resident Assistants and Commuter Assistant Resources (CARS). The student advisors are trained upper-level students who work with faculty advisors to support and advise new students during orientation and throughout the year. The Orientation Crew handles much of the programming and behind the scenes work that goes on during orientation, including the famous “Introduction to Campus Life” skit each year. Resident Assistants live on each residence hall floor and provide support for students, and help to create a healthy community living environment. CARS are student leaders who help support new commuter students.
Murray said that Move-In Day holds a special place in her heart.
“I love talking with the incoming students about their orientation experience and upcoming year at Meredith,” said Murray. “Seeing all of the smiles and hearing the excitement from incoming students and the Student Advisors makes Move-In Day one of my favorite days of the year at Meredith.”
Click here to see a photo gallery of 2012 Move-In Day
About the Class of 2016
Meredith College welcomed approximately 425 freshmen into its Class of 2016. The students come from 15 states and 12 countries, including Brazil, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, India, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Mexico, Morocco, Nepal, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Togo.
The Class of 2016 includes 60 honors scholars, the largest incoming class of Honors Program participants in Meredith history. This is a 40% increase over the number of honors students who entered in the previous class.
Meredith also welcomed 29 students who will be in the first class of Meredith College Teaching Fellows. Since 1987, Meredith participated in the prestigious North Carolina Teaching Fellows program. The College launched its own Teaching Fellows program after the North Carolina Legislature voted to phase out the statewide program. Of N.C. Teaching Fellows who have graduated from Meredith College in the last three years, 100% have passed PRAXIS II, and over 95 percent are currently employed or in graduate school.
Another successful new initiative is Meredith’s Impact Raleigh Program, which will have 111 participants in 2012-13. This initiative highlights the impact Meredith students have on the local community and enhances each participant’s college education through service, learning and academic opportunities. The program, which includes a renewable $1,000 grant, selected participants from Wake County high school graduates.
In addition to the increase in first-year students, Meredith also has higher enrollment among undergraduate transfers and graduate program participants.
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Have you presented research or attended a professional meeting recently? Has your department earned an award? Share news of these accomplishments and more with the Meredith community. Faculty and staff are invited to email items to Melyssa Allen, “Campus Connections” editor, at firstname.lastname@example.org.