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Fresh Fest: The Kickoff to a Freshman Journey By: Okoye Roy

Updated: Oct 16

Each new season brings a sense of renewal, and this fall the class of 2027 has been welcomed to Hardin-Simmons University. One’s freshman year is often regarded as the most memorable year in college life, offering a prime opportunity to form connections, new friendships, explore one's faith and more.

At HSU, the Office of Student Engagement seeks to ensure that first-year students feel at ease on campus. This is achieved through a variety of extracurricular activities like Stampede, Paint Wars, Gilbert Hunt and Fresh Fest.

Fresh Fest is an annual event dedicated to celebrating the incoming freshman class. It serves as a warm welcome to campus life and a chance for students to come together in a spirit of camaraderie and excitement. This event focuses on helping the newcomers feel like an integral part of the HSU campus from the very beginning.

It also fosters opportunities for students to connect and socialize. It is a platform for freshmen to cultivate new friendships, establish bonds with their peers and create a supportive network within the academic community.

“Fresh Fest is an annual event that we plan to celebrate our freshman class on campus. This event is important because it provides another opportunity for freshmen to come together a month or so after Stampede has taken place to reconnect with their peers and to help them feel like they belong here at HSU,” Megan McKinney, director of student engagement said.

“So far, HSU has given me the college experience I once dreamed of,” Sophie Hale, a freshman nursing major from Alaska said. “My favorite part of Fresh Fest must be the smoked marshmallows and having the opportunity to meet new people again.”

Ultimately, Fresh Fest is a memorable and engaging experience that aims to nurture a sense of belonging, togetherness and enthusiasm among the incoming freshmen. It sets a positive tone for the academic year ahead, ensuring that the newcomers feel both at ease and excited about embarking on their educational journey at Hardin-Simmons.

Welcome, Class of 2027.

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