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Nearly 800 freshmen will be on the NMSU campus for new orientation program

Aggie Welcome Week (AWW), a four-day new-student orientation program, will kick off the college careers of nearly 800 incoming freshmen Aug. 16-19 on the New Mexico State University campus.


highly interactive program, will provide participants with the necessary tools to succeed, said Brad Bankhead, associate vice president for enrollment management.

The new program will build on what the popular Chile Camp Program has accomplished for the past several years and incorporates national best practices known to be effective in achieving student success. During a 2004 campuswide summit on retention, it was recommended that advising and registration for new students be separated from orientation to improve student service in both programs. New-student registration will now take place in April and June.

"AWW will create opportunities for new students to network with their peers and with people in the community," Bankhead said.

Students will be put into groups of 10 to 12 people guided by a Team Leader, a current NMSU student. Team Leaders will be on hand to answer questions and facilitate team-building activities, generate discussions about programs, give campus tours and escort students to all AWW events. About 50 upper-class students already in leadership positions will participate in the program.

Through this experience students will also have the opportunity to meet faculty and staff before classes begin; listen to national speakers address issues critical to academic success; and learn about campus safety, cultural and social diversity, smart choices concerning alcohol and other relevant topics.

Some highlights include:
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David Hellstrom, director of education and training for The BACCHUS and GAMMA Peer Education Network, will lead two sessions: "Alcohol: Information and Misinformation" from 10 a.m. to noon and "Alcohol and Violence" from 2 to 3 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 17. Both sessions will be in the Corbett Center Ballrooms.
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Academic Picnic, noon to 2 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 18, at Preciado Park on campus. During this lunch, students will be able to mingle with deans, department heads and faculty.
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Aggie Induction, 7:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 18, at the Corbett Center Outdoor Stage. The Aggie Pride Band, coaches and athletes, cheerleaders and Sundancers will gather to contribute to the induction of our newest Aggies.

"Although AWW is not required, it is highly encouraged for new students to participate in order to become familiar with the university and create for themselves a platform for college success," Bankhead said.

For a complete list of AWW events, go to http://aggiewelcomeweek.org/?page_id=2.