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Back To School! NC State Welcomes Freshmen for 2009 School Year

It’s that time of year again! North Carolina State University is welcoming new and returning students for the beginning of the fall semester and a new academic year on Wednesday, Aug. 19.

NC State received the largest number of freshman applications in its history, and expects a freshman class of 4,700, as well as 1,050 transfer students. The new arrivals will bring NC State’s student body to more than 33,000. The expected freshman class includes 82 valedictorians and 82 salutatorians. The class has an average SAT score of 1745 – including the writing portion – and a weighted high school grade point average of 4.19. Forty-two students had a perfect score on the math portion of the SAT, while 26 had perfect critical reading scores and nine had a perfect score on the writing portion.

Approximately 42 percent of the expected freshmen were in the top 10 percent of their high school class, and approximately 73 percent of them were in the top 20 percent. The class hails from 98 of North Carolina’s 100 counties, as well as 29 countries and 40 states plus Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The College of Engineering is the most popular program for first-year students, with 1,400 expected freshmen planning to enroll there.

When residents, friends and family engage in University Housing’s move-in tradition from Friday, Aug. 14 through Sunday, Aug. 16, they’ll discover a new sparkle to some familiar facilities. From apartments to residence halls, several buildings now feature a host of updates and additions, from new landscaping and furniture – including loftable beds and stand-alone dressers in some buildings – to the results of innovative conservation efforts (the continuing implementation of LED lighting and low-flow showerheads and toilets). Find more information on housing at

New arrivals will also have an opportunity to help NC State as it continues to take a lead role in the global fight against hunger in partnership with the Raleigh-based group Stop Hunger Now.  As part of Service NC State, students, as well as members of the university and the surrounding community, will work together to break their record of packaging 1,010,374 meals in one day by participating in the University Million Meal Event. Not only will more than 1,400 volunteers assemble meals at NC State on Saturday, Aug. 22, but NC State has taken a leadership role in organizing other area universities for a “University Million Meal Week.” Mike Giancola, director of NC State’s Center for Student Leadership, Ethics & Public Service, says his office worked with Stop Hunger Now to organize students from NC State, Peace College, Meredith College, East Carolina University, UNC-Wilmington, NC Central and UNC-Chapel Hill to package 1,025,000 meals during this year’s event. The meals will be used in school lunch feeding programs around the world.  The budget is over $250,000 which covers the cost of the raw ingredients and fund raising is ongoing. More information on Service NC State is available at

The Convocation Festival will be held Monday, Aug. 17, at the RBC Center, featuring keynote speaker Greg Mortenson – bestselling author of Three Cups of Tea, NC State’s summer reading selection. Mortenson will be discussing how to promote peace through education, and there will be a collection of change for Mortenson’s Pennies For Peace program. The event, which runs from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., will also include an organization fair, pep rally and welcomes from NC State Chancellor Jim Woodward and other campus leaders. Buses to the event will begin loading at 5 p.m. from Bragaw Hall. Due to public interest in the event, all seats available to non-university affiliated individuals are full.

Aug. 17 will also see the grand opening and ribbon cutting for the newly renovated Frank Thompson Hall. The $16.8 million renovation includes two state-of-the-art theaters and improved accessibility for those with disabilities.

On Tuesday, Aug. 18, students can get tips on how to succeed at NC State by attending academic success workshops being held at the university’s D.H. Hill Library from 11 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. The workshops address study strategies, what to expect in class, and other issues.

After the first day of classes on Wednesday, Aug. 19, students can unwind with free food and music at the Chillin’ and Grillin’ event sponsored by the Inter Residence Council and Interfraternity Council. The event begins at 5 p.m. at Tucker Beach.

There is more food and fun (and a chance to learn how to get involved in student organizations on campus) at the Back To School Jam on Thursday, Aug. 20. The event is sponsored by the Black Students Board, and will be held at Harris Field from 4 to 7 p.m.

Students can celebrate the end of their first week of classes on Friday, Aug. 21, at Friday Fest. Held from 5 to 10 p.m. on Lee Field, between Doak Field and Lee Hall, the event features free food and live music from country music artists Josh Gracin and Chuck Wicks. Students planning to attend should pick up a free ticket at Ticket Central in Talley Student Center.

NC State’s Office of Parents & Families Services and campus partners will continue the Parents’ Helpline program. Families with questions or concerns may call a toll-free number (877-568-5733) or e-mail for assistance.

For a full listing of Wolfpack Welcome Week activities, visit