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Being a part from the start

The MSU Denver community welcomed new members of the Roadrunner family at last week’s Convocation celebration.

By Cory Phare

August 21, 2017

Rowdy at New Student ConvocationThrongs of eager, if somewhat nervous, new students filled the PE Events Center on campus last Thursday for MSU Denver’s Convocation, accompanied by equally anxious family and friends there in support. By the end of the event, however, any concerns were transformed into excitement to launch into the fall semester next week.

The celebration, organized by First Year Success (FYS),welcomed first-time, transfer students and their supporters to the MSU Denver community. Director of FYS Lunden MacDonald greeted everyone both in English and Spanish before turning things over to Braelin Pantel, associate vice president for student engagement & wellness and dean of students. Pantel detailed the supports and resources available on campus, described what engagement looks like at MSU Denver and encouraged students to create “new school year resolutions” for a fresh, positive start.

President Janine Davidson then addressed the crowd, commending new Roadrunners on their first great decision of choosing an exceptional education at a great value. She asked students to visualize what they thought their first year will be like and detailed some of the key opportunities available for students at MSU Denver.

Davidson also stressed the importance each individual brings to the rich fabric of the University community.

“This is your place, your school,” she said. “You belong here.”

Students at New Student ConvocationAlumnus and comedian Troy Walker then took the stage to recount his circuitous journey that began with an initial detour (and how admissions departments wouldn’t take his "Mario Kart" skills into consideration with his 1.9 GPA.)

Ultimately, however, he found success as a Roadrunner, which led him into law school – and then success as a comic, appearing on CBS and “The Late Late Show.”

Walker credited this to the critical transformation that happened on campus.

“MSU Denver is geared toward and tied to your success as a thinker,” he said.

After, Provost Vicki Golich had the audience recite the Roadrunner pledge and Evelynn Guzman from New Student Orientation led everyone in the fight song. Groups then broke out for ice breaker yard games and a resource fair and food to wrap up the celebration.

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