Oxford College welcomes inaugural spring start class

Daniel Christian •

Spring start students with "take-and-make" kits

Oxford's first class of spring start students has arrived on campus.

For the first time in school history, Oxford College admitted a class of students to begin their academic journeys in the spring semester. This inaugural spring start class consists of 50 students both international and from all over the United States.

“Each year, Oxford receives a strong and diverse pool of applicants, and there are many more qualified applicants than the number of seats available in the first-year cohort that begin in fall semester,” said Kelley Lips, Dean of Enrollment Services. “We are excited to bring in this group of talented students, many of whom have spent the fall semester pursuing real-world opportunities and will bring fresh perspectives to campus. They are prepared to make an immediate impact in our community.”

Ashley Yeung, a spring start student from the Los Angeles suburbs, is among the many who spent the last few months exploring their interests, and she has arrived on campus energized by her experiences.

“I worked part-time as a Certified Nursing Assistant at a local nursing home and completed EMT school,” said Yeung, who is interested in pursuing a pre-med track. “I hope to work as an on-campus EMT soon.”

Prior to the start of the spring semester, Oxford announced that it would hold classes remotely for the month of January due to the nationwide surge in Omicron variant COVID-19 cases. On Monday, January 10—the day before classes began—spring start students attended a virtual orientation that included information from Career Services and their Discovery Seminar teams. Senior leadership, including Dean Doug Hicks, Dean Joe Moon, and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Valerie Molyneaux, greeted students in a virtual welcome session.

Spring start students will attend an in-person orientation on January 29 and 30, an event that will coincide with Oxford’s re-opening of classrooms at the end of the month. Topics will include campus resources as well as leadership and community-building opportunities. 

“It is always a pleasure to welcome incoming students, and we are thrilled to have our first ever spring start class,” said Stephanie Maddox, Assistant Director for Continuing Student Experience. “We can’t wait to see what new ideas they bring to campus and all they accomplish in their time at Oxford.” 

In addition to meetings and orientations, on-campus students have been able to socialize with virtual game nights and “take-and-make” programs, where they grab an activity kit—pick-up Legos, embroidery, stuff-a-plush—and complete it wherever they’d like on the grounds.

These programs have been led by spring start leaders—second year students whose role is to ease the transition to college life. As part of orientation, they facilitated these activities and others in virtual nightly meet-ups designed to bring new students together.

“Before coming to campus, I placed so much emphasis on the idea that I was a spring admit and that it would take me a while to fit in with the other first-years,” Yeung said. “However, I'm glad to have found out that’s not the case. I have noticed everybody here is so nice and welcoming. My roommate and I have had many spontaneous conversations in the halls with people we didn't even know at the time, including fall-admits.”

“I am proud to be part of Oxford’s first spring start class,” she added. “I believe taking this leap of faith will be extremely rewarding for both my academic career and personal goals.”

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