Pacers Welcome Freshmen, Families
Aiken, SC (06/28/2019) — This summer, the University of South Carolina Aiken is teeming with new students and their families who are on campus for orientation.
Whether they're freshmen who are stepping into college courses for the first time or transfer students joining the USC Aiken student body, an energetic group of student-leaders is welcoming them to the university. Pacesetters help guide the new Pacers through the transition to USC Aiken.
"I look out at all you incoming freshman, and it brings back memories of my own orientation. I mainly remember how insanely scared and nervous but excited [I was] to be entering into a completely different world from high school, feelings I'm sure a lot of you are experiencing right now," shared Nick Morris, one of the pacesetters.
"Sometimes I look back at the man I was freshman year and compare him to who I am now. I am truly a changed man and have grown in ways I never imagined. I'm no longer a blind follower. I'm a leader who makes informed decisions. I am no longer the shy individual I once was. I'm now being asked to give a speech at freshman orientation; something I never would have imagined."
Morris encouraged the newest Pacers to get involved in one of the many student groups on campus. USC Aiken offers more than 90 organizations, including Greek sororities and fraternities, academic honor societies, civic organizations, intramural sports, and special interest groups.
"Make the effort; join a club or organization you like because trust me, there is one for you," the sophomore nursing major said.
Administrators joined the Pacesetters in welcoming the freshmen and transfer students during their respective orientation sessions. The provost and executive vice chancellor for academic affairs was among those introduced to the new Pacers.
"While you're here, I'm going to ask you to engage with ideas and engage with people," said Dr. Daren Timmons, provost.
"This is a great opportunity to see new things, learn new things, experience new things. As you are exposed to new ideas and people, you will see the beauty in the exploration."
While not giving the incoming students homework at this point, Timmons did ask something of them.
"Would you commit right now to see the people who aren't engaged and find a way to draw them in?"
Studies show that students who participate in activities in and out of the classroom enjoy a smoother transition from high school to college, generally perform better academically, and successfully become more independent.
With that in mind, Morris celebrated the newest Pacers.
"Here's to a great year of making new lifelong friends, creating memories that will last a lifetime, and most importantly; making the grades to keep mom and dad happy."