The Office of Student Life is now in charge of Welcome Week and has implemented some changes in hopes of allowing future students an easier transition.
Wildcat Week, as it’s now known, will take the place of the old program in which incoming freshmen spent time with their future Core class while adjusting to ACU and life as a newly independent college student.
“We’re really trying to bring Welcome Week into the 21st century,” said Alex Abston, a pre-law communications major from The Woodlands. Abston is also one of the seven student directors in charge of making Welcome Week happen.
“We really want school pride and school spirit to seep into the orientation process during Wildcat Week,” Abston said.
Some of the originals from Welcome Week, like the candlelight devo, will still be permanent traditions in the revamped week, but some events, such as shutting down Cyprus Street downtown and bringing all the food trucks in Abilene, will be new.
Caddie Coupe, director of New Student Programs, said working with Kevin Campbell in Admission, Chris Riley in Student Life and Dr. Robert Rhodes in the provost office helped spur the changes being made.
“They all really felt like it was time for a change for our students,” Coupe said.
Coupe likes to think of the revamping not as changes, but as upgrades.
“It’s like going from an IPhone 5 to an IPhone 6 plus,” Coupe said.
Wildcat Week will focus on a lot of college logistics that may sometimes get pushed to the back burner during the excitement of the first few weeks of school. The student directors have plans to incorporate as much information as possible, while still keeping it fun.
Garon Goodspeed, senior accounting major from Farmers Branch, is another member of the student directors who is excited about Wildcat Week.
“With Wildcat Week, we’re really trying to squeeze in as much information as possible, but still keep as much action in there as we can,” said Goodspeed “We don’t want the freshmen to think ACU is just about information, because it’s really about worthwhile relationships.”
Free time will be another big change involved in Wildcat Week, as will showcasing the rec.
Coupe says the freshmen will get a chance to preview exercise classes, participate in some fun competitions throughout the week and learn more about intramurals.
Another major addition to Wildcat Week will be the direct relationship between the students involved and Wildcat Reign.
“They’ll help us showcase our athletes, organize events, and teach the traditions of ACU to the new students,” Goodspeed said.
There are some new additions to Wildcat Week that even leaders will not know about until they happen.
“It’s going to create a lot of buzz and excitement,” said Abston, “Not just about the campus but about their future here.”
Coupe says the main hope is to make the incoming students feel like they made the right decision in choosing ACU.
There are several ways for current students to get involved. To apply for a leadership position, visit http://www.acu.edu/academics/fyp/leadership.html.
Deadline to apply as a leader is April 10, and deadline to apply for Campus Crew is April 17. All descriptions for each position are available online as well.