Mississippi College

Freshman Orientation at MC

July 13, 2007

Davis Lofton really didn't need an extensive orientation at Swor Auditorium and other places at Mississippi College.

"I've grown up here. Basically I have a lot of family here," said Lofton, 19, a Clinton High graduate who was among nearly 600 students and parents soaking up information and enjoying the fellowship at MC's freshmen orientation Friday.

The facts back him up. His father, Choctaws assistant men's basketball coach Don Lofton, who's coached at MC for 25 years, and his grandfather are MC graduates. Davis Lofton plans to be a chemistry major when he returns for fall classes beginning in August.

Although they've been around MC for decades, his mother and father tagged along for the sessions, including a smorgasbord of menu selections for lunch in the cafeteria. "This is my first year doing orientation - I've always been on the recruiting side," said Madelyn Lofton as her son made new friends. "This is very helpful. This is like a big pep rally. It gets you fired up."

Some of the new freshmen joining their parents on campus were practically newcomers to the 4,000-student Christian university with roots going back to 1826.

Kendrayla Keys, 18, a 2007 graduate of Prentiss High, was joined by her parents and her 9-year-old sister, Cemyiah, as they toured the campus, from the dorms to the Baptist Healthplex, and learned the basics about financial aid.

"I like how peaceful it is here,'' said Keys, who plans to major in history and later attend law school. "I always wanted to come here."

Kendrick Keys, a Sanderson Farms employee, said MC's location in Clinton is comforting because it's just an hour's drive from his home in Jefferson Davis County and close enough to regularly to see his daughter. "I love it," said his wife, Cynthia Keys.

The orientation sessions for new MC freshmen conclude Saturday. With the exception of a little rain on and off, the sessions went well. "We've never had more people than this,'' said Jim Turcotte, vice president for enrollment management and enrollment services. He estimates there were at least 260 students on hand for the sessions Friday. "We've had a good mix of students, both in-state and out-of-state."

Just getting to know the Clinton campus, students were told they have many opportunities at the college to study abroad. Costa Rica was recently added as the 11th study abroad program on the list this fall. MC leaders like Ron Howard, vice president for academic affairs, encouraged them to take advantage of those options overseas. "We live in a multicultural world. Economics has gone global," he said.

Others were encouraged to get involved with service clubs, play sports, or become mentors in the community during their undergraduate years at MC.

For more information contact the Office of Enrollment Services, 601-925-3800/toll free 800-738-1236.

PHOTO CAPTION: The Lofton family - Madelyn, Davis (incoming freshamn from Clinton), and Don - were among nearly 600 students and other family here for Freshman Orientation on Friday, July 13, 2007.

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