It’s mid-August at New College, when the campus transforms from ghost town to boomtown, with students arriving from as far as Arizona, Oregon and Israel.
Orientation is up and running, and the incoming first-years and transfers are in their first “class” – a session titled “College Life 101,” about New College’s community standards.
There’s serious and informational stuff, starting with welcomes by President Don O’Shea, Provost Steve Miles and Dean of Studies Robert Zamsky, and running through sessions on information technology, relationships, alcohol and drugs, and sexual harassment and discrimination, and mini-classes to start determining their AOCs.
And there’s plenty of fun. They’re walking the campus – shoes recommended, for now – and participating in group games, watching movies on Z Green, having “mocktails” with their RAs and getting wet at the nighttime pool party and the Sail Club cookout on the Caples waterfront.
While the final statistics aren’t yet available, Kathleen Killion, dean of admissions and financial aid, said the College can expect one of the largest and most talented incoming classes in its history.
Here’s a look at a few of the members of the 2015 cohort:
- Daniel Parr was one of 14 students in Nebraska to get a perfect score on the ACT. He also played on his high school baseball team for four years, and was on the football and swim teams as well. He’s considering studying philosophy at New College, and a career in teaching or writing. When his local newspaper asked for a quote, Daniel gave an extremely New College response: “Whatever you’re worried about doing, you should probably worry less, including grades.”
- Ethan Kennedy was the inaugural recipient of the Daniel S. Hall Social Justice Award by the Palm Beach County Human Rights Council. He was the founder and president of his high school’s Gay-Straight Alliance and participated in Creating Change 2014, the nation’s largest gathering of activists, organizers, and leaders in the LGBTQ community. He was elected student band conductor and acted in a production of “Les Miserables.” He plans to study political science and gender studies at New College.
- Conor Welch was valedictorian of at Bayshore High School in Bradenton and is the first in his family to attend college. He chose New College over several Ivy League colleges and plans to eventually pursue a doctoral degree.