Elon welcomes diverse group of new students to campus for spring semester

More than 60 new students began their Elon journeys on Sunday, as New Student Programs welcomed them to campus during Spring New Student Convocation and New Student Orientation.

Elon University has officially welcomed its newest students to the campus community after a weekend of events aimed at preparing them for the start of their journey Under the Oaks.

For 63 new students, the start of the spring semester marks the beginning of their time at Elon. The spring enrollees come from a variety of backgrounds – transfer students, first-year students who deferred their enrollment to the spring, and first-year spring applicants. Members of the group come to Elon from all over the world.

“We see folks coming from as far away as different countries and from right here in North Carolina,” said Director of New Student Programs Emily Krechel. “Some people are coming from community colleges, from four-year institutions, or from home because they waited a semester to start.”

Sunday afternoon, several of the new students were invited to McCrary Theatre at the Center for the Arts for a masked, socially distant and intimate Spring New Student Convocation ceremony. The event was limited to the new students and was live-streamed to the Elon community. Anyone wishing to watch a replay of the event can do so in the above video.

The platform party for Sunday’s ceremony included (from left to right) Provost Aswani Volety, Vice President for Student Life Jon Dooley, SGA Executive Vice President Robbie Miley, and University Chaplain Jan Fuller.

Following the invocation by University Chaplain Jan Fuller, the group heard from Provost Aswani Volety about the merits of an Elon education, the university’s focus on engaged learning, and what it means to be a member of the Elon academic community. Vice President for Student Life Jon Dooley spoke to students about the importance of adhering to the Elon Honor Code – both in the classroom and around campus – and shared a number of meaningful Elon traditions with the group. Student Government Association Executive President Robbie Miley also offered welcoming remarks to the newest members of the Elon community during Sunday’s ceremony.

As in the Fall New Student Convocation and Call to Honor ceremonies, each student received an acorn, representing the beginning of their Elon experience, and an honor coin to signify their commitment to the university’s Honor Code.

Students spent the rest of the weekend learning about campus resources and opportunities during New Student Orientation. Students were grouped with orientation leaders who led them through discussions and helped build community among the group. The orientation gave students the opportunity to establish relationships on their first day on campus and learn about useful resources that will help them throughout their time at Elon.

These connections are especially important this year, as students continue to navigate life in the COVID-19 pandemic. While the new students spend time adjusting to life on campus, they will have the support of others who share in their experience. And given all that has happened in the world as these students prepare to embark on their new journeys, it was especially important to help them feel welcome in their new home, Krechel says.

“For many of these students, this is a long time coming,” she said. “It’s a monumental moment for many of them because it’s finally happening – the start of something they have been dreaming about for quite some time.”

New Student Programs engages students and their families in the Elon learning experience by facilitating their transition, preparing and supporting them as they become active, successful and authentic members of the university community. New Student Programs does this through teaching new and continuing students and their families about academic success, campus resources, traditions and Elon culture, and by helping them build community.

To learn more about New Student Programs, as well as opportunities for new students, visit the office’s website here.