May 24, 2019  

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Southern Miss Welcomes Students on First Day of Classes

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Southern Miss freshmen, from left, standing, Madeline Robin, Darbi Guardanapo and Daytona Coles meet with Josh Cromwell, seated, left, and Carol Green of University Libraries at an information booth at Cook LIbrary Aug. 29 on the first day of classes at the university (USM photo by David Tisdale).

New students at The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) found the gold carpet rolled out for them on the first day of classes Aug. 29, signaling the start of the fall 2018 semester.

Faculty, staff and upperclassmen are making themselves available to assist the newcomers with their questions about anything from directions to available resources, on Wednesday and Thursday, at booths and information tables on the Hattiesburg campus, as well as through the Office of Orientation and Transition Programs’ “Find Your Classes” outreach.

As classes begin for the fall semester on the Gulf Park campus in Long Beach, students are utilizing the new Student Services One Stop for centralized assistance with key campus services including financial aid, business services, student ID cards, and more.

At Cook Library on the Hattiesburg campus, Josh Cromwell, institutional repository coordinator, and Carol Green, serials librarian, were among University Libraries staff and faculty who took shifts answering questions from students at an information table in the facility’s foyer.

“We’re here to help [new students] with the transition to life at the university, as well as share information about the many services the library offers,” Cromwell said.

Madeline Robin, Darbi Guardanapo, Daytona Coles – all freshman nursing majors from the Mississippi Gulf Coast – stopped by after taking a break at Starbucks to talk to Green and Cromwell. The three students had not met until they attended class together Wednesday morning, but hit it off with each other immediately, and say they’re loving their new home away from home at USM.

“I’m not as stressed as I thought I would be, trying to get used to a new place,” said Robin, a Gulfport native who praised the university’s friendly atmosphere.  “I only knew a couple of people at the beginning, and now I know about 10 people and it’s just the first day.”

“The professors have been great,” said Guardanapo, who is from Biloxi. “They treat you like an adult, but are willing to help with anything you need, or answer any questions.”

Coles, a Bay St. Louis native, said she’s always wanted to work in the medical field, which drew her to USM. “Southern Miss has one of the best nursing programs around, so I knew this would be the place for me,” she said.  

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