The first group of student leaders and the first team of ’Roo athletes have arrived on campus, and that means the official start of the 173rd year of Austin College is not far off. Some 320 first-year and transfer students are likely packing and preparing to join them, perhaps experiencing excitement as well as the first-year jitters common among new college students. Returning students, too, are anxious to get back to campus and friends and to continue their academic progress, one step closer to graduation.
Move-in day for new students is set for Friday, August 20. Members of the College’s faculty and staff, as well as some alumni and returning student volunteers, will be on hand to offer ’RooNation greetings as new families arrive. Those families begin their real association with the campus as they unload cars and trunk loads of belongings at their students’ residence halls, then make their way to complete paperwork in Wynne Chapel. Their acquaintance also begins that Friday with the local community as students and parents set up rooms, then head to local stores to buy the things they discover have been forgotten.
Austin College’s year will traditionally begin with the Opening of School Convocation on Monday, August 23, on Clyde Hall Graduation Court. Classes begin on campus Tuesday, August 24.
The College returns this fall to fully in-person classes and the benefits provided by classroom interaction and collaboration. Masks must be worn inside. COVID testing will be part of the entry to campus for students, faculty, and staff. The President’s COVID-19 Health Task Force has secured on-campus testing and will monitor positivity rates on a daily basis, as well as vaccination status and area health conditions, to have the information needed to be responsive to the changing dynamics of the public health situation. The committee will continue to provide updates to the campus community on health and safety protocols.
Austin College, a private national liberal arts college located north of Dallas in Sherman, Texas, has earned a reputation for excellence in academic preparation, global awareness, pre-professional foundations, leadership development, committed faculty, and hands-on, adventurous learning opportunities. One of 40 schools profiled in Loren Pope’s influential book Colleges That Change Lives, Austin College boasts a welcoming community that embraces diversity and individuality, with more than 50 percent of students identifying as persons of color. The residential student body of approximately 1,300 students and an expert faculty of more than 100 educators allow a 12:1 student-faculty ratio and personalized attention. Related by covenant to the Presbyterian Church (USA), Austin College cultivates an inclusive atmosphere that supports students’ faith journeys regardless of religious tradition. The College, founded in 1849, is the oldest institution of higher education in Texas operating under its original name and charter.