Quinnipiac welcomes Class of 2022 and transfer students

August 25, 2018

Students sit in seats during Welcome Weekend

Members of the Quinnipiac University Class of 2022 were encouraged to embrace and learn from the diversity and inclusion of #BobcatNation.

Filling Lender Court at the People’s United Center was a clear portrait of that diversity. The first-year and transfer students were selected from more than 23,600 applicants, and they represent 33 states and more than 30 countries. Nearly 20% of the students self-identify as people of color; and the same percentage are first-generation college students.

“The essence of our university is our people — our students, faculty, staff and alumni. And we are all different,” President Judy Olian told our newest students. “Differences make us stronger. We receive the input of better ideas when people come from different walks of life.”

“A Quinnipiac education is a door that can open to an entirely new life path,” Olian said. “And that door keeps on opening, and opening again and again and again.”

The connections the students make at Quinnipiac will help shape their lives for the better, Olian said.

"You will meet people who did not grow up in your town, who may not look like you, or talk like you," she said. "And they probably don’t think like you. This is what makes for a wonderful university."

She urged the students to allow the people they meet, courses they take, countries they visit and cultures they experience to transform their perspectives.

“You’re in a big sandbox at QU. Play in it,” she urged. “Learn about something you know nothing about, go to a theater performance, the Irish Hunger Museum, a soccer or lacrosse game or eat sushi. And test your leadership skills in a club you join, or in a sorority or fraternity. Enjoy the full experience that is QU, and grow from it.”

Mark Thompson, executive vice president and provost, encouraged the students to join the faculty and staff as active partners.

“Your college experience is the foundation on which the rest of your life will be built,” he told the students. “You are so smart, so capable and there’s so much potential in each of you. Make the most of it. Don’t leave it to chance. You are the architects of your future.”

Don Sawyer, associate vice president and chief diversity officer, told students to not only be concerned with figuring out what they want to do as a career — but rather look the larger impact they can make.

“Prepare for this ever-changing landscape,” Sawyer urged the students. “The world is big and small at the same time.”

Sawyer told the students that the university strives to help them become engaged, culturally aware citizens by bringing the local and the global together.

“What problems do you want to solve,” he asked. “Let these questions guide your choices.”

Ryan Hicks ’19, the Student Government Association president, urged his newest classmates to make the most of their time at Quinnipiac.

“Look up,” he said, “because that’s where life happens.”

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