Panther Welcome, a fall tradition at Georgia State, is expanding its slate of programming this year to include a wider array of opportunities for both new and returning students to get involved on campus.
The program, sponsored by various departments on campus and spearheaded by the Office of New Student Programs and Parent Relations, is an annual production that both encourages student involvement on campus and eases new students into the expected differences of college life, as well as the environment of Downtown Atlanta itself.
While Panther Welcome has existed in some form for many years, this year’s event is only the third where events officially occur over two weeks.
According to Matthew Robison, the Director of New Student Programs and Parent Relations, the expansion of the event from one to two weeks was a result of working “to accommodate a growing number of program offerings and event happenings.”
Since the expansion of the program in the fall of 2007, a number of programs have become staples of Georgia State. Among them is the annual Georgia State Idol program on Wednesday, August 26, where students aspire to be the Kelly Clarkson (or, if going by years equivalent to the hit series, the Carrie Underwood) of Georgia State University.
The program also incorporates two special week-long services for students during the first week of classes. The first is the “Ask Me” Booth program, where campus employees and student leaders sit throughout campus with maps and directions for new students.
The second service is the Mega One Stop Shop, an expansion of the One Stop Shop services typically provided in Sparks and Kell Halls. The service, provided out of the Senate Ballroom in the Student Center, offers students a wider variety of options than usual, as well as extended areas for seating and a pickup place for preordered purchases from the University Bookstore.
Other one-off events held during the course of the two weeks range from pure entertainment, such as Cinéfest’s showing of Watchmen, to thoroughly educational, including the Flight-to-Fight Self Defense Program. Offices and departments on campus also host programs geared toward their particular roles on campus.
Students looking to get involved on campus will have multiple opportunities to do so with the “Meet the Sororities and Fraternities” programs held during Panther Welcome, while student organizations will be represented at the Student Organization Street Fair on Tuesday, August 25.
For more information, please visit www.gsu.edu/pantherwelcome, or reference the calendar on the back page of this week’s edition of The Signal.