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Friday, August 29, 2008

Parents Council helps UNCP freshmen move in on August 18

By Chris Adams

Excitement filled the air as new and returning students moved into residence halls of The University of North Carolina at Pembroke on August 18 for the 2008-09 fall semester.

The Parents Council, in just its 2nd year, gave out pizza and answered questions.

Welcome committee – On the left Wanda Totten, a member of the Parents Council, and James Bass, director of Alumni Relations, and greet parents and students.

Welcome committee – On the left Wanda Totten, a member of the Parents Council, and James Bass, director of Alumni Relations, and greet parents and students.

Black Line

James Bass, director of Alumni Relations and coordinator of the Parents Council, hosted a tent for new students and their families to welcome them to the UNCP family. 

“We want to make parents aware of the support they have at the University,” Bass said. “I was the first in my family to go to college, so I had to figure out things on my own.”  

Wanda Totten, a Reidsville, N.C., resident, is a member of the Parents Council and an involved parent.

“Every time I sent an email to the University, I got a quick response. Every time I called, someone called back,” Totten said. 

She sings the praises of the Parents Council for helping her daughter make the transition from high school to college.

“Every one’s talking about giving back, well, we like to ‘give forward’ to our parents and students,” Bass said.

Council member Joseph Johnson, of Mocksville, N.C., and the parent of a returning student, said the Parents Council gives input on University programming.

“Our first meeting this year was great,” Johnson said. “We talked about Parents Weekend, which I attend every year to support my son, Jaren.”

A member of the Nursing Department faculty, Cynthia Herndon’s daughter is a senior nursing student. As a member of the Alumni Association and the Parents Council, Herndon has a unique view of the University and its students.

“We’re starting a newsletter to keep parents better informed,” Herndon said. “The Parents Council can be a very helpful agency for parents and their students.”

Parents were enthusiastic about their children and UNCP. 

Arnetha White, mother of freshman Clifton White-Cromartie, was moving her last son into college from Durham, N.C. White-Cromartie had positive things to say about the staff of the University, as she put clothes in a closet.

“Everyone was so friendly and helpful. The admissions office pointed us directly where we needed to go, and they were extremely approachable,” White said.

The students were ready as well.

Laura Wetherington, a native of Wilson, N.C., and incoming freshman, was more than ready to start the school year. Over the summer, she worked three jobs, and said she was ready to take on the job of being a student.

Also ready to go was freshman Mark Barber, of Statesville, N.C. Barber, who is attending UNCP on a track and field scholarship, is looking forward to his first year.

Barber said he prepared for the year by working out for the season and reading “7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens” by Sean Covey and “The Samson Syndrome” by Mark Attebery.

Move-in day was not a new experience for Naly Yang, a junior from Charlotte, N.C. But he had a new role coordinating the Student Government Association’s “Don’t Throw it Away” campaign, which recycles dorm room furnishings.

“We’ve sold refrigerators, microwaves and some rugs too,” Yang said. “This is a fund-raising project for a local public school.”

UNCP officials were ready for school to start and pleased to see how popular campus housing has become.

“I’m so glad they’re back,” said Wellons Residence Hall Housekeeper Alfred Lindsey. “We did a lot of work over the summer to get everything ready, and we are ready.”

Occupancy of the 1,705 on-campus beds is high (96 percent). 1649 students have picked up keys, 814 males and 835 females.

“Everything went really well today, and the weather was great,” Redfearn said. “It reflects well on our professional staff that campus housing is so popular.”

Chris Adams is a senior mass communications major.

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