Class of 2016 Arrives on Susquehanna University Campus
Published on August 24, 2012
Teams of grinning, orange-shirted volunteers joined cheerleaders and a marching band amid early-morning fog on August 23 to help the Class of 2016 move into Susquehanna University residence halls. More than 680 new students emptied SUVs into new homes-away-from-home as the sun burned off the low cloud cover and Susquehanna’s 155th academic year got underway. More than 2,200 total students are expected for the start of classes August 27.
The newest class of students filed expectantly into the field house of the James W. Garrett Sports Complex at 2 p.m. for Susquehanna’s annual Convocation ceremony where, along with family members, faculty, staff and trustees, they learned they hail from 23 states, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands and 12 other nations. Gracing the stage, along with that of the United States, were flags from Brazil, Burma, Canada, China, Iran, Japan, Macao, Morocco, Poland, Russia, Saudi Arabia and Vietnam, representing the new students’ home countries.
Addressing the crowd, Director of Admissions Chris Markle said they comprise one of the largest classes in the school’s history, including more than 70 who are enrolled in the school’s honors program, now in its 30th year. He also noted that five new students are enrolled at Susquehanna through the Veterans Affairs Educational Benefits program, in keeping with the university’s designation by G.I. Jobs as a Military-Friendly School.
“You should be proud of all that you have accomplished up to this point,” Markle said. “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.”
In his address to the audience, University President L. Jay Lemons gave a nod to the university theme for 2012–13, Freedom and Responsibility. “The mission of Susquehanna University is to prepare students to lead productive, reflective and creative lives of achievement, leadership and service in a diverse and interconnected world,” he said. “The fulfillment of our mission is only possible if all members of our community exercise both freedom and responsibility as we embrace the privilege of learning and living together.”
Lemons went on to introduce five Susquehanna upperclass students “who are exemplars of achievement, leadership and service.” He shared the accomplishments of Kristin Berger, of Lewisburg; Samantha Culin, of Wilmington, Del.; Ryan Mason, of New York City; Ryan Rossi, of Rye, N.Y.; and Emily Stankaitis, of Honeoye Falls, N.Y., each of whom had a bit of useful advice for the new students in attendance.
Addressing the parents, Lemons said, “I hope that the five students that I introduced to you today make you excited about the journey that is ahead for your loved ones. The growth and development that takes place during these years is a joy to behold.”
Lemons closed by offering a vision of the future for the young people just beginning their college careers. “You will come to be a part of the tapestry that is Susquehanna University and the larger tapestry that is this time in human history,” he said. “Let your threads be bright, and may your stitches here and in the world be brilliant.”
Karen M. Jones