Vaughn College greeted its incoming class of freshmen on Thursday (July 14) when the first of three new student orientation sessions got under way. More importantly, Vaughn's new students got to greet one another.
"It's really exciting to be here," said Jiminique Lee, a Westbury High School graduate eager to study airport management when the fall semester begins in September. "This is a very good school and this session is an opportunity to meet everyone."
The College has scheduled new student orientation sessions for more than 20 years, according to Assistant Director of Student Affairs Kamla Holland. This year, three two-day sessions are scheduled, offering students a chance to familiarize themselves with Vaughn and, in some cases, New York City.
Sessions will follow Aug. 9-10 and Aug. 24-25.
"This is an opportunity for new students to get an introduction to their first year in college," Holland said. "They get to meet representatives from all the offices on campus so they know where to go if they have an issue."
Nelson De Matos, 19, from Newark, N.J., researched dozens of colleges before committing to Vaughn. He plans to study aircraft operations with the goal of becoming an astronaut. He was excited to hear that 2011 Vaughn graduates Joseph Kamel and Shahidul Islam recently secured internships with NASA.
"That's great," De Matos said. "I'm convinced Vaughn is the right place for me."
Ariel Ruiz, from Samuel Gompers High School in the Bronx, visited a Vaughn open house last autumn. She was sold on the College once she saw students experimenting with video game designs. Ruiz will study mechanical engineering technology: computer-aided design.
"I looked at other colleges but none caught my eye the way Vaughn did," Ruiz said. "I always wanted to be a graphic designer."
Yesterday's session began with a morning welcome and continued with introductions by key Vaughn personnel, most especially the student affairs department, headed by Vice President John F. Agnelli III. Agnelli and Holland explained all aspects of student affairs operations, including clubs, activities, intercollegiate athletics and life in the residence hall.
Group sessions continued before dinner and departure for a Broadway show. The students return Friday (July 15) for more introductory activities, including a book discussion and pinning ceremony formally identifying themselves as part of the College.
"I like that Vaughn is small," said 17-year-old Jonathan Florentino, from the Bronx. "You can get to know all the teachers and students."
VAUGHN COLLEGE WELCOMES INCOMING STUDENTS: Above, Assistant Director of Student Affairs Kamla Holland greets members of Vaughn's new freshman class and their families. Below left, Jaime Sanchez (left) and Christopher Rivera are introduced to the College's computer system while at right Jonathan Florentino enjoys a ride in a flight simulator.