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Wildcat Welcome In Full Swing

New students experience first football game, President’s Convocation and more

With the start of classes just a few days away, more than 2,000 incoming freshmen and transfer students made the most of a weekend that offered ample opportunities to experience various aspects of life at Northwestern.

Wildcat Welcome orientation events, which began Thursday, Sept. 20, gave students the chance to get to know each other better and learn more about the Northwestern and Evanston communities.

Freshmen spent Friday evening familiarizing themselves with the amenities offered at Norris University Center. “Norris at Night” presented an evening of free food, student group performances, games and prizes. Students even participated in a Northwestern-themed game show.

The Class of 2016 got its first taste of Northwestern football Saturday at Ryan Field by participating in a new student tailgate party and watching the Wildcats defeat South Dakota. Before the game, new students participated in a relatively new tradition by running on the field with the Northwestern University Wildcat Marching Band. After the game, students were bussed to Six Flags Great America in Gurnee, Ill., a rollercoaster theme park that was rented exclusively for their use Saturday night.

After a weekend of fun, students took time Sunday to give back to the communities surrounding Northwestern. SCAPE -- Serving Communities and Promoting Engagement -- sent freshmen and transfer students to sites throughout Evanston and Chicago to spend several hours working on various service projects.

Freshmen attended the President’s Convocation Monday morning, which featured performances by a capella group Purple Haze and the marching band. University President Morton Schapiro and Vice President for Student Affairs Patricia Telles-Irvin offered advice to students on how to make the most of their time at Northwestern. Schapiro also announced that rock band Young the Giant and rapper Nas will perform at the annual A&O Blowout concert to be held Oct. 12 at Welsh-Ryan Arena.

Wednesday was the final day of Wildcat Welcome, highlighted by the new Deering Days Welcome BBQ. Freshmen, transfer students and peer advisers gathered on Deering Meadow to enjoy live music from student groups, free food and prizes.

It's back to reality on Thursday for freshmen and upperclassmen, as classes officially begin.

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