By Travis Richmiller
The Quincy University incoming of class of 2020 has a total of 375 students, 287 of whom are freshman, which would make the class of 2020 the largest Quincy University has ever seen. There is also a five percent increase in students coming from out-of-state, which makes for more diversity and new viewpoints.There is much behind-the-scenes preparation that goes into a class’s arrival.
Assistant director of Residence Life and New Student Programs, Andrea Gruger, says there is a lot of preparation that goes into making sure everything goes smoothly for the new students’ arrivals. Andrea works with eight resident assistants and 18 connect mentors. Their job is to prepare each class to be role models, leaders, and help students to make sure that their transition to Quincy University goes smoothly. With a class this large, it requires extra work, but it is rewarding for Andrea and the rest of her team.
“Every class is a little different, and this class seems very positive, and challenge each other on viewpoints, which creates a positive environment and goes hand-in-hand with our students’ academic experience,” Gruger said.
Crystal Sutter, the acting dean of students, also has a lot of responsibility when it comes to this large incoming class. Sutter helps organize club fairs, and is head of the student engagement department.
“Residence halls had to be sure that they were ready to go, because there are more students there than in the past. The mail room has to be prepared, so every student has a mailbox,” Sutter stated.
The incoming class has left a lasting impression on Sutter, which makes doing her job extra rewarding.
“These students that have come here are eager to be a part of QU. They will make a difference on campus life. The students that graduated left a void, and this class is eager to help fill that void. There are a lot of leadership qualities in this group,” Sutter said.
This large incoming class brings added challenges for campus clubs and sports as well. Emily Nelson, a junior at Quincy University and the head of National Panhellenic Conference group Phi Sigma Sigma, has noticed that recruitment numbers have gone up since this class has come onto campus.
Phi Sigma Sigma started with 17 members this semester. That number has grown to 25, which would be a 47 percent increase in a short time with opportunities to join still available.
Nelson is excited about all the new members coming into Phi Sigma Sigma, and she knows that every member will leave a lasting impression on the organization.
“No member is alike. Every member has her own likes and interests. Everyone’s own different viewpoints will give us new perspective. It will also bring more friends and connections, which through networking will help us find new opportunities for growth and development,” Nelson stated.
One new member of Phi Sigma Sigma is Abigail Moore, a freshman. She has loved her stay so far, and has joined over five different clubs and organizations already.
“There are so many opportunities to get involved and succeed here at Quincy University,” Moore said, “and everyone has been very nice and lent out a helping hand to us freshman. It is great to be here,Quincy has shaped me in all the right ways.”