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Fireworks to Kick Off New Academic Year at UMass Dartmouth

The 30-minute fireworks display will begin at 8:30 p.m. and is open to the public. Students will participate in a variety of welcome activities...

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UMass Dartmouth will welcome its largest ever freshman class and largest ever
contingent of residential students this weekend, culminating with a 30-minute
fireworks display Monday night.

The fireworks, which will begin at 8:30 p.m., will follow post-dinner activities
including a Coca-Cola-sponsored DJ and prize giveaways outside the new Woodland
Commons building located at the center of the newest resident halls. From 7:30
p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Sodexho, the campus food service company, will serve refreshments
to students at the courtyard behind the Woodland Commons residence halls.

The public is welcome to attend the fireworks and bring picnic dinner with
them. The public is encouraged to watch the fireworks from the campus quadrangle
near the bell tower. Parking for the public will be available in parking lots
13 through 16. Traffic into the campus will be stopped at 8 p.m. for public
safety reasons. Alcoholic beverages are prohibited.

A total of 1,486 first-year students are expected on campus this fall, representing
a 16 percent increase over last year's 1,284 first-year enrollees.
Over 90 percent of Massachusetts cities and towns and 25 different states are
represented in the class of 2009.

With the opening of a new 800-bed housing complex, approximately 4,000 students
will set up their home away from home on campus, up from 2,400 in 2001. Residential
students now represent over 50 percent of the total undergraduate student body,
up from 41 percent in 2001.

"UMass Dartmouth's faculty quality, research opportunities,
comfortable size, and coastal location are attracting more students every year,"
Chancellor Jean F. MacCormack said. "And more than ever, these students
are demanding a traditional campus experience in which their learning occurs
not just in the classroom but through a myriad of campus activities."

Students will arrive at the residence halls on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
Classes begin Tuesday.

Other highlights of the academic year opening include:


Author:  "John Hoey"
Date:  02-Sep-2005
Department:   Chancellor's Office

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