UA Officials Welcome Incoming Freshmen Class
UA officials are preparing for another large freshman class to join campus this fall, an official said.
UA officials will welcome nearly 4,500 incoming freshmen to campus in August, approximately the same size as last year’s class, said Suzanne McCray, vice provost of Enrollment.
The demographics of the class will not be known until a later date, as numbers are still being sorted out, McCray said.
The UA will adjust to increased enrollment by holding classes in non-traditional places, at least until the completion of the Hillside Auditorium in September, said Mike Johnson, director of Facilities Management.
“The provost is planning with college deans to make all necessary classes available,” McCray said. “The Hillside Auditorium will open in the fall.”
School officials are also planning growth carefully in the upper division classes as the larger freshman classes from the last two years move through, McCray said.
With the addition of new campus buildings, Wil Cheatham, an incoming freshman, is ready to experience what the UA has to offer, he said.
“I am looking forward to the academic opportunities that will be available to me,” he said. I am hoping to gain a degree in Spanish and business.”
However, there are some parts of the freshman experience Cheatham thinks he may not enjoy.
“I am not looking forward to the mind-straining, long nights ahead of me,” said Cheatham. “I am not used to doing a ton of homework, so it will definitely be a large change.”
Although Cheatham is primarily focused on his studies, he said he is also excited to participate in extra-curricular activities.
“I am hoping to participate in Greek life,” Cheatham said, “I am also ready to experience a Razorback football game as a student. I have been to multiple games in the past, but I think attending as an actual Razorback student will be a completely different and exciting experience.”
While many students are skeptical about dorm life, Cheatham said he is ready to embrace it.
“I am living in a two-person suite in the Northwest Quad,” Cheatham said, “I think I will really enjoy the open community style of dorm life and making new friends.”
UA offers a variety of living styles, with 13 different residence halls available to freshmen, according to the UA housing website.
Jessica Seiboldt, an incoming freshman from Bentonville, said she will be living in Maple Hill West.
“I am most excited for not having to share a bathroom with an entire floor. I will enjoy having to share a bathroom with only a couple other girls,” Seiboldt said.
Though Seiboldt will not be far from home, living without her family will be a big adjustment, she said.
“I think I will miss my family the most. Eating cafeteria food and not my mother’s cooking will be a huge change for me as well,” Seiboldt said.
UA has three dining halls available for freshmen to eat in, as well as multiple on-campus restaurants, including Chick-fil-a, Burger King, Papa Johns and others.
Most students experience homesickness occasionally, but making new friends will help to fill the void, Seiboldt said.
“I know that I will be able to gain many new great friendships during my time in college that will last past my four years of college,” Seiboldt said.
Cheatham hopes some life-long friendships will develop during his time at Arkansas.
“One thing I hope to gain from my college career is a lot of friends that I will be close with throughout my entire life,” said Cheatham.