Averett Holds First In-Person Registration Day for Incoming Freshmen in Over a Year

Posted on June 29th, 2021 by Matt Bell

Averett University held the first in-person freshmen registration day since 2019 on Friday, June 25, with 100 incoming students in attendance. The day was filled with zealous students meeting faculty members for the first time and finalizing plans for the fall. Including their families, more than 300 people were on campus Friday.

“I believe registration day went well. Students and families had a great time here on campus. Many families enjoyed bingo in the MPR, meeting with advisors and other students, eating in the café and taking care of business in Carrington Gym,” said Phillip Mitchell, coordinator of health and wellness in Student Engagement. “Many students were ecstatic to receive an Averett student ID, and we could overhear students saying they were going to post the ID on Instagram and Snapchat, showing the world they are an official Averett cougar.”

After a long and tiring nine-hour trip from Coco, Fla., Khalil Mitchell was excited to return to Averett’s campus for just the second time Friday.

“I am looking forward to meeting new people and being on the wrestling team,” Mitchell said. During his high school career, he noted finishing state runner-up in wrestling.

His parents, Tonya and Reginald, and twin sister Jordyn joined Khalil on campus for the day’s events. They shared that while the trip was long in a car, it was worth it to be coming to Averett. Currently, Mitchell plans to major in nursing.

The day began for Mitchell and the other incoming freshmen in the Violet T. Frith Fine Arts Center, where they checked in before hearing a welcome message inside Pritchett Auditorium.

Averett President Dr. Tiffany M. Franks welcomed the incoming freshmen and their families before students were divvied up for various activities around campus.

Franks noted the last 15 months of their high school careers occurred in ways they could not have imagined. With their college careers now beginning, she said an all new set of emotions are probably being felt.

“I’m sure those before you who have sat in those seats have felt those same feelings,” Franks said.

First-generation college student Mason Williams from Mechanicsville, Va., said he was feeling different emotions going into his college career.

“It’s a lot of emotions. I’m not really nervous, and it’s kind of sad to be leaving home. It’s going to be different the first couple of months,” Williams said. He plans to major in aviation and play baseball.

His mother, Lisa Williams said she is very proud of Mason but it is also sad because they are a tight-knit family.

“This is going to be different because none of us know what to tell him (about college). What housing will be like or classes; so it will be a learning curve for us all,” Lisa said.

During her speech, Franks thanked the parents, “for entrusting us with your most treasured being. We take it seriously.”

Following the welcome, students and their families participated in an abbreviated Main Campus tour. Averett Student Ambassador Hannah-Ireland Durando, a junior majoring in history and social sciences with a teacher licensure, said she wanted her families on tour to feel comfortable at Averett, and not feel completely lost once they arrived in the fall.

As part of her tour, Durando ensured students and their families that plenty of help is available at Averett for their studies in the Student Success Center.

“They are here for you. It is harder to fail at Averett than it is to succeed,” Durando said.

Chatham, Va. resident Armone Redd said she was excited to join the Averett Family because of how helpful everyone was.

“I chose Averett because of the opportunities, location and because of the staff. They really helped when they reached out,” Redd said.

Throughout the day, games for prizes were held in the multipurpose room, and meals were provided to everyone in attendance. During the afternoon, students were able to complete financial check-in, receive their class schedules, meet with the Center for Community Engagement and Career Competitiveness, Residential Life and Housing, and Student Engagement. Students were also able to talk to the Bookstore staff about Averett’s All Access program.

“Before, you had to go to the Bookstore and pick out all your books yourself and paid for them just as you would buying groceries from the store. They were yours to keep, and they were expensive,” Durando said. “Now with the Averett All Access program, your books are included in your tuition, rentable with the option to buy them if you want to keep them, and you don’t have to do anything else. They are ready for you to pick up when you arrive on campus.”

In closing, Franks told the students that Friday was one of the first steps to recognizing their infinite potential.

“Today you start a new chapter of your life where so much awaits you,” she said.

Classes begin for all students Wednesday, Aug. 18.

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