Friday, August 24, 2012

One of my favorite times of the year is the first few weeks of the fall semester. There is this incredible energy on grounds as students get back from their summer endeavors—whether they were working at an internship in D.C., or traveling around the Mediterranean on a Semester at Sea trip.  Everyone is excited to reconnect on grounds, and go to a number of great welcome activities that take place in the weeks after move in.

The newly finished lawn, ready for convocation
One of my favorite events is the hypnotist Tom Deluca, who performs in the amphitheater each year. Students go all out to be one of the lucky few who are picked to go on stage and get hypnotized by Deluca. Hopefuls will wear bright colors, and sit on the shoulders of their friends holding quirky signs. Over the years students have formed love affairs with pieces of fruit, football players have been convinced they were cheerleaders, and one student decided to change the school mascot to “the mayonnaise jars”.

The activities fair is also a great event that takes place in the first few weeks of the semester. Every group you could imagine—from the Cavalier Daily (our student newspaper), to the Latino Student Union, to acapella groups, to the outdoors club—will be handing out information on what they do as a group, when meetings are, etc. It’s a great opportunity for new students to see what activities they might want to try out, and ultimately invest time in.

Other annual events to take place this coming weekend are convocation—the official welcoming of the first year class by President Sullivan—as well as the Welcome Back concert at the John Paul Jones. This year’s line-up includes K’naan and Flosstradamus. Next week’s events include a movie showing on the Old Dorms quad, and the annual Rotunda Sing—an awesome event where students will set up blankets and picnics on the lawn, while watching all of our acapella groups perform.

A warm welcome to the class of 2016! I look forward to spending this awesome time of the year with you all (and hopefully with all of you prospective students in the years to come).


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