WARRENSBURG — Beginning college can be intimidating for new students, but as the University of Central Missouri prepares for the first day of classes on Monday, Aug. 19, it is continuing an annual program that will help freshmen ease into campus life.

UCM Experience Kickoff activities begin Thursday, Aug. 15, for more than 1,000 first-year students who are embarking on their college education.

It runs through Sunday, Aug. 18, under the direction of staff in various units served by the Office of Student Experience and Engagement.

Shari Bax, vice president of Student Experience and Engagement, said the event is focused on helping freshmen to make a successful transition into college.

Students who participate in the program will learn more about the university, its traditions, culture, friendships, engaged learning and involvement, residence hall life and many resources that will serve them throughout their university experience.

UCM began the program four years ago.

Bax said students who participate in the kickoff program have an opportunity to move into their campus residence prior to other students.

Move-in day for the students began at 9 a.m. Thursday.

Other activities include lunch in the dining halls and a welcome in the Student Recreation and Wellness Center.

Students participating in this session enjoyed some afternoon fun listening to the UCM Marching Band, while also learning about expectations for them as students, obtain college schedules, meet campus student ambassadors and more.

Activity sessions, team time and engaged learning activities were slated for later in the afternoon and a special session at 4 p.m. was available in Hendricks Hall for parents or guardians to provide them with helpful information related to topics such as admissions, Family Weekend and the parents’ newsletter.

Engaged learning activities were available for students in the evening, as well as optional floor meetings with socials, beginning at 7:30 p.m.

Among special Friday events is the convocation at 9 a.m. in the SRWC, followed by college meetings, breakout sessions to discuss topics such as Career Development, UCM Success Center, Diversity in College, Healthy U (University), Public Safety and Money Management are planned, and a movie presented at 8 p.m. at Vernon Kennedy Field rounds out the second day of the UCM Experience.

Saturday begins with the Classroom Call to Action program at 9 a.m. followed by breakout sessions from 10:30 a.m. to noon and 1:30 to 5 p.m.

An entertainment presentation by mind reader Eric Dittleman is scheduled for 8 p.m. in Hendricks Hall.

Sunday morning provides an opportunity for worship activities of students’ own choice.

Campus offices will be open from 1 to 3 p.m. that day, and students can opt for class tours from noon to 2 p.m.

Sunday also marks the beginning of campus-wide Week of Welcome activities, which will take place through Saturday, Aug. 24.

These events are fun and entertaining, and are helpful for first-year, transfer students and non-traditional students as they transition to academic and student life.

Learn more about the UCM Experience Kickoff by visiting ucmo.edu/kickoff.

To find out more about Week of Welcome at UCM, visit ucmo.edu/current-students/student-experience/special-events/week-of-welcome.

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