New students coming to OCC for the fall 2014 semester were greeted by “Welcome Onondaga,” a series of events and programs which helped students become familiar with campus, make new friends and get a head start on being successful in their first semester. The four-day long program included a wide range of events:
- Academic resource fair highlighting campus support options and co-curricular opportunities such as clubs and travel.
- Academic department orientation introducing students to faculty in each department.
- Parent informational fair providing College information from a parent’s perspective.
- Convocation, the formal start of the academic year introducing students to an important academic tradition.
- Onondaga Lazers pep rally and introduction of the College’s new mascot, “Blaze.”
- Many social activities including “drive in” movies and an ice cream social.
- Campus-wide staff and student barbecue sponsored by AmeriCU
- Lazer tag and glow golf in the SRC Arena and Events Center
More than 1,000 students registered to participate. Hawa Giannetto, a freshman from Lafayette was among them. “All of the events and programs were very informative. Everyone wanted to help to make sure you got off to a great start. It really made me feel like the College cared about me,” said Giannetto.
“Welcome Weekend was a huge success,” said Cathy Dotterer, Executive Director of Housing and Campus Services who coordinated logistics for Welcome Weekend. “The entire program gave new students a sense of identity with both the College and fellow students. It gave them the opportunity to learn about campus resources and create valuable relationships with faculty and staff before taking their first class.”
“Welcome represents just one part of President Crabill’s effort to focus the College on the student experience,” added Seth A. Tucker, Vice President, College-Affiliated Enterprises and Human Services. “Those of us who worked on this project are grateful for the strong support we received, and we are already looking forward to an even better program next year.”