Class of 2018 Set to Make Their Mark at Arcadia

By Purnell T. Cropper | August 22, 2014

The Class of 2018 is here.

On Friday, Aug. 22, the second-largest class in University history—675 students—officially entered Arcadia. Orientation leaders, student-athletes, faculty, staff, and other members of the Arcadia community welcomed the new students, carrying clothes, lamps, mini fridges, books, and other dorm room essentials. Others familiarized the first-years with campus and helped keep excitement high.

“We couldn’t have asked for a smoother move-in process,” said Josh Stern, vice president for Student Affairs and dean of Students. “Public Safety, Facilities, Student Affairs; So many teams have worked really hard to plan for accommodating this many people in such a short time and keeping their energy up. We’re looking forward to a great orientation program and a fantastic rest of the opening day.”

Everywhere on campus, first-years and their families met an excited crew of helpers. Samantha Maguire ’15 assisted those funneling in and out of Kistler Hall. She wore a small button pinned to her shirt that read “Free Hugs,” estimating that she had hugged about 300 people so far.

Alexandra Rowe joined Arcadia as a member of the Class of 2018. Alexandra Rowe, second from left, joined Arcadia as a member of the Class of 2018.

Students moving into the Castle were met by a host of orientation leaders and staff donning red New Student Orientation shirts. Collene Pernicello, director of Undergraduate Admissions, was among the group.

“The students are really excited, the families have been really excited, and we’re excited that everyone is here,” she said. “They seem wonderful. I think they’re going to be a great class.”

Across campus, Orientation Leader Kaleigh Krauss ’17, a psychology and criminal justice major, stood outside the Kuch Center, directing students from check-in to their next stops for the day.

“It’s been awesome,” she said. “It takes me back to my orientation last year. I’ve seen so many different people, some I’ve met from summer orientation, and some people I know personally from my hometown in Texas (McAllen).”

New Student Orientation volunteers checked in new students inside the Kuch Center Gymnasium. New Student Orientation volunteers checked in new students inside the Kuch Center Gymnasium.

One such fellow Texan was Ethan Muñoz, who plans to study International Business. He looks forward to departing for London as a First-Year Study Abroad Experience (FYSAE) student in the spring.

“I wanted to do International Business, so I figured, what school would be better than a school that’s going to allow me to travel most of the time I’m here?” said Muñoz.

His parents walked alongside him as they looked for the campus bookstore.

“I’m still trying to process that I have to leave him,” said Diana, his mother. “He’s my first and only, so I’m already empty nesting.”

Muñoz is part of an exclusive group of students departing for FYSAE this school year. Next week, 28 students will depart for London, England, and 14 will go to Stirling, Scotland. In the spring, 34 students—including Muñoz—will travel to London, while 20 will fly to Stirling. Until then, Muñoz will be staying in Kistler Hall. He was excited to meet his roommate, with whom he has already become friends.

Alexandra Rowe, from Annapolis, Md., also was eager to see her roommate. Rowe, who plans to study biology and enter Arcadia’s pre-veterinary medicine program, met her over the summer through Arcadia’s Class of 2018 Facebook group, and the pair have been talking since.

“I just put myself out there,” she said. “We’ve become such good friends over the past few months, and I’m excited to finally meet her and a lot of new people. It’s a new chapter in my life, and I’m ready.”

Photos by Allison Krosnick