Throughout the semester, APSU saw the impacts that new students can have on campus as students saw record-breaking enrollment numbers.
“We’ve also seen several records broken with our enrollment- record all-time enrollment, record freshman class, record graduate student and international student enrollments. However, I think the most significant academic achievement this semester has been the start of our first doctoral program,” Executive Director, Public Relations and Marketing, Bill Persinger said.
Educational leadership is the first doctoral program to be offered at APSU.
“The semester has brought about a lot of energy and enthusiasm to celebrate the fact that more students are choosing to study at Austin Peay. I hear a lot of optimism about the future in my meetings with the members of the campus community,” President White said.
This energy and enthusiasm for campus could be seen at the APEX events and other activities hosted by the office of Student Life and Engagement.
“The Student Life & Engagement office had great success with APEX events including the first ever Monocle Madness Carnival and the annual Gov Run back in August. A great time was had by all who attended Homecoming 2018, and the annual Peay Read program hosted thirteen events focused on the theme of justice in the reflection of the book ‘Just Mercy’,” Coordinator of Leadership and Student Organizations, Kelly Carpenter said.
Students also participated in impactful events and forums like the TED Talks on Mondays in Einstein’s and the Lunchtime Forums and Cupcakes and Canvas events at the Wilbur N. Daniel African American Cultural Center.
At the Lunchtime Forums, Director of the WNDAACC Marcelius Braxton said, “We talked about what we wish we knew when we started college, social media and mental health, the importance of voting [and] health in communities of color.”
Also at the WNDAACC, students were provided with the opportunity to check out over 200 calculators and laptops for an entire semester.
The WNDAACC will hold their African American Graduation Ceremony on Thursday Dec. 13 where they will honor the graduates.
In relation to centers like WNDAACC, the Student Government Association has assigned senators to five centers on campus.
“The senators act as liaisons for the following centers: the African American Cultural Center, the Military Students, ANTS, the Hispanic Cultural Center and the Office of Disability Services.
“This way if students or faculty and staff cannot make our senate meetings they still have a voice,” SGA President, Courtney Covington said.
SGA passed three significant pieces of legislation so far this semester.
One of the pieces of legislation details the possibility of bringing an LGBTQ center to campus.
“This will bring controversy, but we are the students’ voices and we must be the voice for all students equally. The LGBTQ community has become a minority and does feel like they are not appreciated and welcome as they would like,” Covington said.
Additionally, this semester 14 student cadets from the ROTC program on campus made the commitment to the United States government at the Military Appreciation football game on Nov. 17.
The cadets became contracted Cadets with the U.S Army.
“That opportunity truly helped us show all those in attendance a little bit about who we are. Further, being combined with Fort Campbell Soldiers at the beginning of the game when the flag was posted across the field was significant and just another way for us to continue with building relationships here and in the community,” Professor of Military Science LTC. Eric Westphal said.
Also, at the Military Appreciation game, the new Military Adviser in Residence, Gen. Scott Brower (Ret.) and the new Director of Athletics, Gerald Harrison worked together to recognize Gold Star families who have lost loved ones in service to the U.S.who paid the ultimate sacrifice.
“The football players presented camouflage APSU jerseys with names of fallen soldiers and MIAs to their loved ones. Nearly 300 Gold Star family members attended the game. At the same game, a stadium chair that will always remain empty was dedicated to POWs and MIAs as a pledge to remember those who sacrificed for our freedom. That initiative was one promoted by the University’s Sigma Chi Eta Xi chapter,” White said.
Campus police this semester pushed the importance of using the Rave App which sends emergency notifications to students.
“We will be upgrading our Rave emergency notification system over the winter break to ensure that all registered students are in the system with their university email address, and they can log in with their email password to add mobile numbers for text messages,” Chief of Police Michael Kasitz said.
Regarding safety on campus, Kasitz said, “Our officers are committed to ensuring Austin Peay is as safe as possible. We will continue to train and stay up to date on the latest tactics and techniques. We will continue to work with other agencies in our community.”
The importance of safety while enjoying all of the fun festivities on campus remains on the forefront of the minds of all on campus but especially on the minds of the 19 officers keeping students, faculty and staff safe.