The second half of the spring semester is an interesting time of contrast on campus. Our seniors are getting ready for graduation and looking forward to starting new jobs. At the same time, we’re still busy working with prospective students who are finalizing their college plans and making sure they have all of their documents submitted so that they can register for the fall semester.
As I’ve indicated in previous columns, and I mention any time someone gives me a chance, our graduating seniors represent a first-rate group of graduates prepared to enter the workforce and make an immediate impact on the economy of our region. Many of our graduates already have jobs lined up. Often, these jobs are a result of their internship or co-op experience. Some of our graduates will be going on to graduate school. Regardless of what they choose to do after graduation, they have a reputation of excellence to uphold. I have every confidence that this class will, once again, have its share of technical leaders that will continue to propel the success of our region.
I’m told that our incoming freshmen also look strong, and it looks to be one of our largest classes ever in the STEM College. Students are entering with AP (advanced placement) credit, or having completed multiple college credits in high school classes. They have ACT scores that place them at the top of their classes. Some will be selected to participate in our STEM Leadership Society, becoming the nucleus of another outstanding group of future YSU success stories. We are delighted to have such a strong incoming class, and are pleased that so many of these students, who could have selected any college in the nation, have entrusted YSU to prepare them for life.
Our entering freshmen were born mostly in 1994 or 1995, the same year as Disney released the Lion King. The central theme of the movie is the circle of life. As we watch our seniors graduate and new freshmen enter to take their place, we get to experience our own circle of life. In only four short years, those students entering the STEM College will be preparing to take their place among the graduates of YSU, ready to enter the world and make their mark on society. Each student will leave an indelible mark on the University, and the college, in the process. That’s the great part about being a professor, and likewise being Dean: the new students entering with a sense that anything is possible, and the graduates leaving with the knowledge that they have the skills to achieve greatness.
Thank you for reading, and for all you do on behalf of the STEM College.