Tag: new students

Welcome Class of 2021

Student and parents unloading their car for new student move-in dayThe welcome mats will be out in abundance Tuesday, Sept. 5 when 385 new Lawrence University students, including 17 from the Fox Cities, arrive for that traditional rite of passage known as Freshmen Move in Day and the start of new student orientation activities. Classes for Lawrence’s 169th academic year begin Monday, Sept. 11.

Freshmen members of the Class of 2021 were drawn from a school-record number of more than 3,600 applicants, building on a five-year upward trend. Since 2012, first-year applications to Lawrence have increased 39 percent.

While Wisconsin, Illinois and Minnesota remain first, second and third, respectively, in sending the most students to Lawrence, more than half of this year’s total of new students hail from outside those traditional big three. California and New York round out the top five Lawrence student-producing states. Some of the incoming students from Texas are still coping with the effects of Hurricane Harvey, which has brought out the best in their fellow Lawrentians.

“We’ve had parents of current students from unaffected parts of Texas reach out to those families of first-year students in the hurricane areas,” said Ken Anselment, dean of admissions and financial aid. “They’re offering help to any fellow Lawrentians who may need it. That’s so Lawrence-like.”

Mother helping son move into the dormThirty percent of the new students identify as domestic students of color: African-American, Native American, Hispanic, Asian-American or multi-ethnic.

“This is one of the most ethnically diverse classes we have seen in decades,” said Anselment. “This continues a trend we’ve seen over the past five years during which roughly a quarter of our new students have identified as domestic students of color.”

China, with 12 incoming freshmen, leads Lawrence’s traditionally strong international student make-up, with six students matriculating from Vietnam. Thirty-four students representing 19 countries, including Bangladesh, Ghana, Kazakhstan, Nepal and the United Arab Emirates are among this year’s first-year students.

“As the population of college-bound students in the United States has been declining, especially so in the Midwest, we have been increasing our national and international recruitment focus,” said Anselment.

student moving into the dormAcademically, first-year students averaged 29 on the ACT, with nearly 40 percent of them graduating in the top 10 percent of their high school class.

“This class is noteworthy for its strong academics, its geographic and cultural diversity and its athletic and musical talent,” said Anselment. “We have some exceptional student-athletes and exceptional musicians. It’s one of the stronger years we’ve seen.”

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Lawrence Welcomes Class of 2017 for 165th Academic Year

As one of Lawrence University’s academically talented incoming freshmen, it is no surprise Paige Witter is a quick study.

But with an epee and a laser pistol?

Paige-Witter_newsblog
Paige Witter ’17

Witter, a budding standout pentathlete, will be among 400 Lawrence freshmen and 17 transfer students arriving on campus Sept. 10 for the start of Welcome Week new student orientation activities. Classes for Lawrence’s 165th academic year begin Monday, Sept. 16.

An accomplished swimmer (a three-time state meet qualifier), Witter decided to try her hand at fencing after her sophomore year of high school. Two weeks later, Witter found herself at a modern pentathlon camp at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. She so impressed, she was invited to participate in the 2011 U.S. Youth Nationals Competition.

Competing in swimming, fencing and the biathlon (laser pistol shooting at a series of targets with three, 1,000-meter runs in between), Witter placed fourth at the national championships, earning an invitation to the Youth World Championships in the process.

Opting to train rather than compete in the world championships, she returned to the 2012 National Youth Championships, finishing second among 20 pentathletes. Her silver medal earned her a trip to the Modern Pentathlon Youth World Cup competition in Tata, Hungary, last September, which attracted 80 female and 90 male competitors from 27 countries. Completing a 200-meter swim, a one-touch fencing bout with all 79 other athletes and the combined biathlon, Witter finished second among four women representing the United States and 60th overall at her first taste of international competition.

“I’m definitely competitive,” said Witter, 18, of Denver, Colo., who cites swimming as her strongest event, but fencing as her favorite. “With pentathlon, you’re doing so much and every sport challenges a different part of you. I was a little bit scared—actually I was a lot scared—the first time I competed, because there were a lot of people who were a lot better than me, but that just got me really interested in training more and trying to get better.”

Paige-Witter_newsblog2
Paige Witter, a member of Lawrence’s incoming freshman class, represented the United States at the 2012 Modern Pentathlon Youth World Cup competition in Tata, Hungary.

Despite her passion for fencing, and the fact the captain of Lawrence’s fencing team, Mariah Wilkerson, is from the same Denver, Colo., high school Witter attended, she will compete for the Vikings in swimming, not as a member of the Lawrence fencing team.

“That was a really hard decision,” said Witter. “I talked to my coach about it. She tells the people who train with her full-time you have to swim every day, but you can get away with fencing just a couple of times a week. It’s obviously preferable to train more, but you can get away with less fencing if you keep up with your swimming.”

Witten is a member of Lawrence’s 400-member freshman class drawn from 292 different high schools from 30 states and 22 countries. A snapshot of the Class of 2017:

Approximately one-fifth of the freshmen are domestic students of color, continuing a seven-year increase in ethnic diversity.

China, Bangladesh, Canada and South Korea collectively account for nearly half of this year’s class of international students (47). This year’s international students represent the largest percentage (12 percent) of a Lawrence freshman class since at least 2000.

• Academically, the plurality ranked in the top 10 percent of their graduating class, including more than one-quarter of them in the top 5 percent.

 The average grade point average among the freshmen tops 3.61 with an average ACT score of 28.

 Approximately 80 percent of the freshmen are enrolling in Lawrence’s college of liberal arts and sciences while 20 percent are enrolling in the conservatory of music.

 Ninety-six percent of incoming freshmen received need- or merit-based financial aid with need-based financial aid packages averaging $33,000.

“One of my favorite times of year is our convocation during Welcome Week,” said Ken Anselment, dean of admissions and financial aid. “All of us get to greet, for the first time, the entire class of new students in Memorial Chapel together at once. You could light Appleton for weeks if you could harness the energy that comes from that event.”

Understandably excited for the start of classes, Witter admits she has “no clue” as to what course of study she wants to pursue at this point.

“It changes literally every day, sometimes every hour,” Witten says with a laugh. “I found Lawrence because it was a small liberal arts school that had fencing and neuroscience, but now I’m doing swimming instead of fencing and I’m still interested in neuroscience, but I’m not sure if that’s going to be my major.”

As for a possible future date with an Olympic Games venue, Witter is keeping an open mind.

“That would be amazing. I know I would have to put in a lot of hard work to do that, and it would be a goal for after college. It’s something that’s still in the back of my mind as something I would love to have the opportunity to train for. I’m lucky to live in Colorado, so I’m in pretty close proximity to the Olympic training center. I got to meet and train with the pentathlon competitors who went to the Olympics last year.”

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2014 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

 

Lawrence University Hits New Student Enrollment Goal for Fall 2013

While many colleges around the country are still accepting applications for the 2013-14 academic year two weeks after the traditional May 1 deadline according to a survey by the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), Lawrence University has met its new student goal for the coming year.

Ken Anselment

According to Ken Anselment, dean of admissions and financial aid, Lawrence has met its enrollment goal of 400 new freshmen for the coming year. He expects to welcome 25 transfer students along with them.

“It is both a delight and a relief to say ‘We have a class,’” said Anselment. “Given how long students waited to make their decisions this year, I — along with many of my colleagues at other colleges — were a little anxious in those days heading up to the May 1 deadline waiting to see how they would come together. This group of new students will add to the vitality of the student population we already enjoy.”

With this class, Lawrence expects to open the 2013-14 academic year with a full-time, degree-seeking student population of 1,500 students.

The incoming class of 2017 represents 32 states and 24 countries. Wisconsin again accounted for the largest percentage of freshmen with just under a quarter of the class, followed by Illinois, Minnesota, California and New York.

The new students include Lawrence’s largest class of international students in the past 10 years — 53 — with China accounting for one-third (18) of them. With four each, Jordan and South Korea are sending Lawrence the second-most international students.

Twenty percent of the freshmen are domestic students of color, among the highest percentages in school history.

Academically, the new class is like the community it joins, in that the plurality ranked in the top 10 percent of their graduating class — more than a quarter of them in the top 5 percent.  The average grade point average among the freshmen is 3.61 with an average ACT score of 29.

“While we’re always excited to talk about what our students look like before they arrive,” said Anselment, “the thing I always look forward to is seeing how they transform once they’re here.”

Nationally, more than 200 colleges were still accepting applications for Fall 2013 freshman and/or transfer admission as of May 16 according to the survey. Seventy-two percent of the respondents to the survey were private institutions and 28 percent were public colleges and universities.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

Ethnically Diverse Freshman Class Arrives Sept. 4 for 2012-13 Academic Year

Call it “back to the future.”

When Lawrence University welcomed its first class in November, 1849, 13 of the 35 students were Oneida Indians.

This year’s incoming class of new students will be nearly 12 times larger than that initial class, but Native Americans will once again be an integral part of the mix. Eight Native Americans, representing Indian nations in Arizona, Iowa, New Mexico and Wisconsin, will be among the 417 incoming freshmen of the Class of 2016.

This year’s class of 450 new students — the second-largest freshman class in Lawrence history (2010 was the largest with 452) along with 33 transfer students — arrives Tuesday, Sept. 4 to begin a week of orientation activities. Classes for Lawrence’s 164th academic year begin Monday, Sept. 10.

Emmet Yepa, one of the incoming Native American students from New Mexico, arrives on campus as a two-time Grammy Award nominee and a nationally-recognized youth leader.

Emmet Yepa ’16

Yepa began singing with the 14-member drumming ensemble Black Eagles shortly after the band won a Grammy in 2004 for “Flying Free” in the Best Native American Music Album category. Yepa helped the Black Eagles garner two more Grammy nominations in 2005 and 2007. He composed the song “Your Precious Smile,” a tribute to his younger sister, Angelina, for the 2007 Grammy-nominated album “Voice of the Drums.”

“I’ve been singing since I was very, very young,” said Yepa. “My dad introduced me to singing and I eventually joined the group. I sing every day. I’m always singing at home. I enjoy singing from the heart, lifting people’s spirits and making people happy.”

In 2010, Yepa and his father left the Black Eagles to form a new group, Northern Vibe, a nine-member drumming ensemble.

“We’ve had lots of people asking us if we’re going to do a CD. We’re in the process, but we haven’t completed it yet,” said Yepa, who has recording his own solo CD on his to-do list as well.

Yepa composes and performs both in English and the Towa language. Jemez Pueblo, Yepa’s hometown of 1,800 about 70 miles southwest of Santa Fe, is the only place in the world where Towa is spoken.

“It’s (Towa) pretty hard to pass on, because it’s not a written language, it’s only an oral language,” said Yepa, the oldest of four siblings.

Last December, Yepa added a “Champions of Change” award to his budding resume. Yepa was one of just 11 Native Americans nationally recognized in a White House ceremony with President Obama that honored individual efforts to give back to the community and demonstrate leadership. Yepa was cited for his efforts to establish the first-ever recycling program in Jemez Pueblo. The Walatowa (traditional name of Jemez) Green Stars Recycling Group headed by Yepa focuses on preserving and keeping ancestral lands beautiful through recycling.

Yepa is a member of one of the most ethnically and geographically diverse incoming classes Lawrence has ever had:

21 percent (88) of the 417 freshmen are students of color.

38 states and 18 countries are represented

Five of the top 10 states from which this year’s freshmen hail are Western states — California, New Mexico, Colorado, Washington and Oregon.

41  freshmen are international students, with China (6), Vietnam (4) and Ghana (3) accounting for the most.

Academically, 45 percent of this year’s freshmen ranked in the top 10 percent of their graduating class while 70 percent were in the top quarter of their class. The average grade point average of the incoming freshmen was 3.62.

“In terms of academic quality, this year’s class looks very similar to last year’s class,” said Ken Anselment, dean of admissions and financial aid.  “However, this year we enrolled a class that, in addition to being one of our largest, is more ethnically and geographically diverse than we have seen in a very long time.”

Approximately 80 percent of the freshmen are enrolling in Lawrence’s college of liberal arts and sciences while 20 percent are enrolling in the conservatory of music.

Ninety-four percent of incoming freshmen received need- or merit-based financial aid with need-based financial aid packages averaging $30,600.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a world-class conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,450 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

Lawrence Welcomes 363 New Students from Record-Setting Applicant Pool

Huma Hakimzada is confident she can handle anything Lawrence University throws at her having already survived fleeing her native Afghanistan to escape the fundamentalist rule of the Taliban.

The 24-year-old from Monterey, Calif., isn’t your typical Lawrence freshman, but Hakimzada is just as excited as any of her classmates to begin her Lawrence career.

“I’ve done a lot of different things in my life, but nothing gave me the comfort of getting that phone call offering me admission,” said Hakimzada, who has worked as a personal banker for Wells Fargo the past three years while taking some night classes at a community college. “A whole new book opened for me with that call. I can’t wait to fill in the pages of that book with the new adventures Lawrence promises for me.”

Peter Thurlow will arrive on campus from Madison with a penchant for recreating ancient objects. The gastraphetes he constructed — a type of ancient Greek crossbow — won first prize at the 2010 Junior Classical League National Convention’s models competition, while the wax writing tablets he made earned second-place honors at this year’s competition.

While taking very different routes to Lawrence, Hakimzada and Thurlow are among 363 new students —330 freshmen and 33 transfers — admitted from a record-setting applicant pool college officials welcome Tuesday, Sept. 6 for a week of orientation activities. Classes for the 2011-12 academic year, Lawrence’s 163rd, begin Monday, Sept. 12.

Hakimzada, the first female Afghan student to attend Lawrence, is following in the footsteps of her older brother, Zubair, who graduated from Lawrence in 2006 and now works for the U.S. Department of Defense.

When the Sunni Muslim Taliban seized power in Afghanistan in 1996, Hakimzada and her family hastily fled their hometown of Kabul and relocated in Islamabad, Pakistan. After five years of seeking refugee status, the family’s application was finally approved on Sept. 9, 2001. Two days later, terrorists struck America, changing everything. It would take another 13 months before the family finally would reach the United States, eventually settling in California.

The daughter of two former college professors in Kabul, both of whom now teach Dari, a native Afghan language, at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, Hakimzada says school was her favorite outlet.

“Life took me on a different route for a long time, but going to school was always my priority. When the opportunity arose, I didn’t want to wait another second. Zubair doesn’t love any place half as much as he loves Lawrence, so he obviously was an influence on my decision. I always wanted to go to the same school as Zubair, so Lawrence was an easy choice.”

Thurlow’s list of creations include a working hydraulus, considered the world’s first keyboard instrument and a forerunner of the modern church organ, that used water power to move air rather than a bellows. He constructed his version based on drawings and pictures of Roman and Greek mosaics. He also has built a Greek lyre.

“I enjoy figuring out how an ancient weapon or instrument would work,” said Thurlow, who is considering a major in art history or history. “A deep part of me likes to preserve cultural and historic items and actually build reproductions.  That’s a really good way of showing what these items were and preserving the knowledge of them.”

A school record 2,667 students applied for admission to Lawrence in 2011, surpassing the previous high-water mark of 2,625 established last year.  But because of an unexpectedly large freshman class in 2010, Lawrence needed to be even more selective than usual to meet its target goal of 330 freshmen.  Only 52 percent of this year’s applicants were offered admission, the lowest figure in recent history

“Last year’s class of 452 freshmen — 100 more than we expected — was unprecedented in its size,” said Ken Anselment, dean of admissions and financial aid. “That had a ripple effect this year. To ensure the best academic and residential experience for our students, we need to limit our overall enrollment, which meant admitting far fewer freshmen this year.
“And despite popular belief, admissions folks don’t always take pleasure from saying no to really good students,” he added. “Ours don’t.”

This year’s freshman class profile upholds Lawrence’s long tradition of academic excellence:

• 13 freshmen were valedictorians of their graduating class

• Average high school GPA of 3.66

• Average ACT score 29 (among those submitting scores; Lawrence is a test-optional institution)

• Average SAT score 1,916 (among submitters)

• 31 percent graduated in the top five percent of their class

• 81 percent of freshmen graduated in the top quarter of their class

“Although numbers may be an easy way to assess the ‘quality’ of a class,” Anselment said, “it’s the stuff beyond the numbers that’s more important. What matters most to us is who these students are as people with unique talents, interests, perspectives and experiences. That’s what really gets us going here.”

While members of the freshmen class hail from 26 states and 21 countries, nearby Neenah High School accounted for the most freshmen (6), while Appleton North and Deerfield (Ill.) high schools were second with four students each.

Ninety-two percent of incoming freshmen received need- or merit-based financial aid with need-based financial aid packages averaging $29,500.

Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a world-class conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. Ranked among America’s best colleges, it was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,520 students from 44 states and 56 countries.