Family Weekend, aimed toward freshmen, new students and their families, will take place this weekend with events scheduled Friday-Sunday.
Beginning with check-in at 10 a.m. on Friday, parents are invited to go to Chapel, visit the Bean and check out the 1 p.m. Cornerstone class as well as a featured panel with faculty, staff and current students, during which parents can ask questions. Food trucks will also be parked in the campus mall area on Friday from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. At night, families can check out Entra a la Plaza from 6-9 p.m. or eat at one of the many restaurants around town – including Abi-Haus, Wingstop and Lytle Land and Cattle – with special family weekend discounts.
The main event of family weekend is Freshman Follies, the freshman talent show. Freshman Follies has three separate shows: Friday at 8 p.m. and Saturday at 1 p.m. and 3:15 p.m. Families can then attend the tailgate at Shotwell Stadium at 4 p.m. and stick around for the first home football game of the season as the Wildcats take on the Northern Colorado Bears at 6 p.m.
Other activities include residence hall open houses and family pictures at Jacob’s Dream. More information about all the weekend’s festivities can be found in the family weekend packet handed out at check-in.
Caddie Coupe, director of student and parent activities, said the Office of Student Life really started to focus more on family weekend within the last 10 years.
“Family Weekend has seen many versions,” Coupe said. “Within the last 10 years, ACU recognized that Family Weekend could be a great retention point for new students, and using the weekend to connect families, who may be new to ACU, makes them feel like they’re a part of our community. We’ve tried to make it something unique and special and created intentional programming that’s worth it for our families to take off work or spend some money to come.”
The point of the weekend is for freshmen and transfer students to show their families how they’ve transitioned to college life and to reaffirm that coming to ACU was the right decision, Coupe said.
“When you’re dropped off as a freshman, you don’t have a lot of ownership over ACU,” Coupe said. “You don’t feel your dorm room is your home. The transition that happens in the first couple of weeks is so special. When our families come back, they can see their students thriving, it’s no longer, ‘Well, this is where I’m going to sleep,’ but, ‘This is my bed and my new home.’ They also get a chance to look in and experience what a day in the life of a college student looks like – Chapel, class, Bean. I also think that it’s really great that our families come here instead of students going home and maybe getting homesick. Embracing ACU as this new home and having the parents here really helps a lot of students reaffirm their decision that ACU was the right choice.”