The 48th annual Penn State Brandywine convocation kicked-off the 2014-15 academic year, as first-year students attended the welcome events.
The day began with the convocation ceremony. Faculty and staff joined more than 300 students under the tent on the grassy knoll. Both Chancellor Kristin Woolever and Student Government Association Treasurer Alex Ten Broeck welcomed the students to Penn State on behalf of the University and student body.
"Today is the first day you can take charge of your life and your future by listening, learning and participating in this great University. Stretch yourselves toward the gateway that is a college degree," Woolever said.
At the ceremony, students heard from Cynthia Lightfoot, director of academic affairs, Stephanie Jones, associate director of student affairs, and Ivan Esparragoza, associate professor of engineering. Esparragoza delivered the welcome address to students and shared challenges students will face and the traits necessary for academic success.
"It is extremely important that you all understand the challenges you will be facing in your new role as college students and you should assume a responsible and positive attitude toward your education," Esparragoza said. "Keep in mind that you need to have a plan that guides you during this journey. Set your goals, define the tasks and actions to reach your goals, use the resources offered by this great institution."
"You will have stimulating and enriching experiences, but also demanding moments ? you always should have a positive attitude toward your education and assume this challenge with determination, confidence and passion."
The convocation ceremony concluded with the alma mater. Students then followed their orientation leaders to academic college and adviser meetings, where they received information about their major and met with their advisers for the first time.
After a barbeque lunch and club rush, the day ended with students attending a variety of different "Road to Success" workshops. The sessions included: financial planning, advising and career services, academic integrity and athletics and international orientations.