Susquehanna University Welcomes Class of 2015 to Campus
Published on August 26, 2011
SELINSGROVE— Susquehanna University rolled out a wet but welcoming carpet for the August 25 arrival of the Class of 2015. More than 650 first-year students moved laptops and linens into residence halls amid showers that nevertheless didn’t dampen spirits as the university’s 154th academic year got underway. Some 1,550 additional students will join them for the start of classes Aug. 29.
University President L. Jay Lemons addressed the students who, along with parents and friends, gathered at the afternoon’s Convocation service in the James W. Garrett Sports Complex. He told the crowd that having just dropped off his oldest daughter at college the day before gave him a new perspective on the day’s events. “Suddenly I find myself needing to walk the walk after having talked the talk for so many years. While I have recognized the anticipation, the anxiety and the fear in the faces, words and bodies of thousands of parents and students, this year is different. I am living the experience with you.”
Among those new to the campus are 41 transfer and eight exchange students. The group already exemplifies academic success. Seventy-two percent were in the top two-fifths of their high school classes, 42 percent were in the top one-fifth, and 25 percent were in the top one-tenth. Ten were the valedictorians or salutatorians of their classes. More than 50 are enrolled in Susquehanna’s competitive Honors Program.
Three new students are enrolled at Susquehanna through the Veterans Affairs Educational Benefits program, in keeping with the university’s recent designation by G.I.Jobs as a Military-Friendly School.
Forty-eight percent of first-year students are from Pennsylvania, with the rest coming from 23 other states, the District of Columbia and six other countries. Beyond the Keystone State, students hail from as near as New York and as far away as California. Others have come from Canada, China, Macau, Myanmar, Russia and Vietnam.
“You should be proud of all that you have accomplished up to this point,” Director of Admissions Chris Markle said to the Convocation gathering. “We have confidence that each of you has the potential and ability to distinguish yourself in a variety of ways while you are here, and we look forward to following your new accomplishments.”
Acknowledging the school’s theme for the new academic year, fear, Lemons added, “Beginning the collegiate journey is one of those times when fear is a companion. Remember that fear has its place, and remember also the words of Bertrand Russell, who said, ‘to conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom.’”
Karen M. Jones