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New students forge bonds in Connections’ nonvirtual return

Michael J. Reed greets some of the Fall 2022 students who will be among the first class of his presidency, which begins Friday.
Michael J. Reed greets some of the Fall 2022 students who will be among the first class of his presidency, which begins Friday.
The Connections Links bring a posed group photo to life, buoyantly responding to the applause that greeted their introduction to the Klump Academic Center crowd. From left are Pringle, Gagliardi, Schooley, Nichols, Cline, Turner and Malchano.
The Connections Links bring a posed group photo to life, buoyantly responding to the applause that greeted their introduction to the Klump Academic Center crowd. From left are Pringle, Gagliardi, Schooley, Nichols, Cline, Turner and Malchano.
Following the welcome, students divided into smaller groups for more individualized interactions. Noah Rudisill-Warner, of York, welding & fabrication engineering technology, holds the traditional beach ball covered with icebreaker prompts. Noah’s question and answer? “What’s your favorite candy?” ... “Skittles!”
Following the welcome, students divided into smaller groups for more individualized interactions. Noah Rudisill-Warner, of York, welding & fabrication engineering technology, holds the traditional beach ball covered with icebreaker prompts. Noah’s question and answer? “What’s your favorite candy?” … “Skittles!”

The 2022 edition of Connections, enthusiastically marking a return to in-person summer orientation for the first time since 2019, kicked off Monday at Penn College. All new students (first-years, transfers and adult learners) are required to participate, as student leaders – an animated bunch known as Links – help them and their parents/guests prepare for the exciting road ahead.

Hospitable weather on Monday and Tuesday, sunshine illuminating the (typically) beautiful campus surroundings, made for a pleasant stroll between buildings.
Hospitable weather on Monday and Tuesday, sunshine illuminating the (typically) beautiful campus surroundings, made for a pleasant stroll between buildings.
After a talk in Penn's Inn about the Wildcat Way – featuring a video shot, produced and edited by the Links – incoming students sign The Wildcat Pledge.
After a talk in Penn’s Inn about the Wildcat Way – featuring a video shot, produced and edited by the Links – incoming students sign The Wildcat Pledge.
Wellness education intern Megan E. Wein (center) joins Connections Links and Meghan R. Delsite Coleman in talking up the many opportunities for students to become involved on campus via athletics, clubs and more.
Wellness education intern Megan E. Wein (center) joins Connections Links and Meghan R. Delsite Coleman in talking up the many opportunities for students to become involved on campus via athletics, clubs and more.

The programs address a range of essential topics: academic expectations and involvement opportunities; information about textbooks/tool kits, meal plans and financial aid; faculty/staff resources; acquiring a student ID card; and a primer on Wildcat culture and community.

This year’s Links: Katheryn E. Cline, Berwick, human services & restorative justice; Frankie M. Gagliardi III, Pottstown, information assurance & cyber security; Brandon M. Malchano, McKees Rocks, building science & sustainable design: architectural technology concentration; Eryn L. Nichols, Rome, business administration; Samir K. Pringle, Philadelphia, business management; and Kellor A. Schooley, Turbotville, and Annika I. Turner, Lewisburg, both enrolled in applied management.

Five more two-day Connections sessions are scheduled through July 26, and a one-day program for adult learners will be offered July 28.

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