by Brett Hedges
The Lance – Sports Editor
UWindsor’s graduating class of 2020 began the next chapter of their academic lives with some faculty camraderies, a few words of wisdom and a musical performance from President and Vice-Chancellor Dr. Alan Wildeman at the Welcoming Celebration at the St. Denis Centre, Sept.7.
First year students concluded their orientation with a boisterous walk across campus featuring each of the faculties offered at UWindsor. The rain didn’t damper any spirits on the afternoon however, as cheers and chants filled the Dennis Fairall Fieldhouse with excitement bursting from each respective program. After a few opening remarks, Dr. Wildeman took center stage and sang a song while playing his mandolin alongside university musicians. The song had a specific message – don’t be afraid to make a fool of yourself.
“We’re all human and with learning comes making a fool of yourself,” said Wildeman. “The whole point of learning is trial and error but you learn from it. Under every rock is a rock.”
Ryan Flannagan is UWindsor’s vice president of student experience and said he was inspired by what he saw at Welcoming Celebration and the outpour of emotion and excitement from the incoming students is a testament to the steps taken to rebuild the sense of community on campus.
“One of the best things about the university is the overall community spirit and sense of connectedness,” said Flannagan. “It’s really important that as soon as you get on campus you feel welcome, that you feel like part of a family and hopefully we have done that for some people today so they walk out and start to make the transition from high school to the Lancers family and community.”
Mitchell Corrent was the lucky recipient of the $3,000 grand prize of UWindsor tuition. The first year music student from Essex was shocked to hear his name called at the end of Welcoming Celebration but said his parents would certainly be happy.
“I was a writing an entry theory exam before this and now I have some tuition paid for by showing up,” said Corrent. “It was such a wonderful experience meeting all of these people I’ll be sharing the next four years with. They are my family now.”