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Campus prepped for start of new year

By August 14, 2013General
Volunteers will be on campus this Sunday to help new students move in to the dorms. Athletes help carry items in residence halls.

With the beginning of the fall semester right around the corner, Delta State University is gearing up for the return of the student population.

On Sunday, the Department of Housing and Residence Life hosts Move-In Day, a welcome celebration for eager students returning to residence halls for another semester of academic success.

Department Director, Julie Jackson, said a group effort has helped the university prepare for one of the busiest times of the year.

“The Delta State housing staff is very excited and looking forward to having all of our residents return to campus,” said Jackson. “Between the Student Affairs custodial staff, the Facilities Management staff and our residence hall staff, we have been cleaning and prepping the residence halls for their return.”

“The Student Success Center (SSC) has organized a world of volunteers to assist with move-in on Sunday, as well as a welcome tent with refreshments.”
The schedule will be busy as student groups, local churches, athletes, faculty, staff and community members will be on hand to help students unload their belongings at the dorms which open at 1 p.m.

The welcome tent in front of the dining hall will serve water, RC cola, ice cream sandwiches, pizza and snow cones. Campus offices will be open for service and support to students and parents from 1 to 5 p.m., including admissions, Barnes and Noble bookstore, financial aid, housing and residence life, Java City, university police, registrar’s office, student business services and the Young Mauldin Dining Hall.  

Volunteers will be out and about offering shuttle services around campus and will also be stationed at entrances to assist parents and students in locating their residence halls.

“At Move-In Day each year, we receive so many positive comments from parents and students about how helpful and friendly everyone is, and we want to roll out the green carpet again this year to welcome the students and parents to campus,” said SSC Executive Director Christy Riddle.

Riddle is still seeking volunteers to help with various tasks that include greeting, serving refreshments, assisting with luggage, entrance guiding and transporting people. Contact her at if you would like to volunteer.

Ted Hochradel, director of Facility Operations, said his crew has been busy prepping the dorms since Teach For America left campus in July.

“We had to turn over about 500 rooms from TFA and get them ready for the students,” said Hochradel. “We’ve gone in and made all the necessary repairs.”

He said this summer was fairly routine, and he is hopeful for another positive year.

“We’re here for support and to make sure everything goes well for everyone on campus.”

The campus bookstore, Barnes and Noble, has also been kicking into gear in anticipation.

“We’re excited for the new year — there’s definitely been a lot of positive energy lately, and we’re happy to be a part of it,” said store manager Tina Gladden.

The store staff has been reviewing all books and supplies and communicating with faculty to register course textbooks.

“We’re thrilled about our textbook rental program going into the semester,” said Gladden, adding that hundreds of books have been added to the list.

“We also want to remind students that any book can be returned for a full refund within the first week, as long as they have a receipt. We have excellent customer service and we’re here to resolve any issues students have with their books.”

Faculty members at Delta State are also anxiously awaiting the return of the student body.

Dr. Clint Wood, chair of Accounting, Computer Information Systems and Finance, said he gets fired up this time each year as students return for more knowledge.

“Education gives people opportunities they would not otherwise have,” said Wood. “Education opens doors and changes lives. That is what we do, and there aren’t many things more thrilling than that. We’re excited because the economy is turning around and we’re getting more calls from employers asking about our students. We’ve also seen a 64 percent increase from last year in our IMBA integrated master’s program.”

All aspects of the Delta State community are getting ready under the leadership President William N. LaForge, now heading into his first full year in his new role.

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