Last year's Welcome Week included big smiles from UMSL students (from left) Lynn Jones, Bri Lawson and Chelsea Butler. Welcome Week 2012 will kick off Sunday with the annual picnic in the Millennium Student Center. Classes will begin Monday. (Photo by August Jennewein)

The countdown’s begun. Fall semester classes at the University of Missouri–St. Louis will start Monday, and campus activity has moved to warp speed in anticipation of the students’ arrival. A few renovations and office moves are still under way.

The official schedule for Weeks of Welcome, also known as WOW and sponsored by the Office of Student Life, will run through Sept. 28. Additional events and details can be found on the Campus Calendar.

Some of the first-week highlights include:

• The annual Welcome Picnic will run from 4 to 6 p.m. Aug. 19 at the Millennium Student Center. There will be food, refreshments, music and games. The event, open to students, faculty and staff, attracted nearly 1,200 people last year.
• Save room for dessert on Aug. 20, and stop by the ice cream social sponsored by the University Program Board at noon in the Nosh at the MSC.
• The UPB Drive-In Movie Aug. 21 will begin at 8 p.m. in Lot C. The featured show will be “The Avengers.”
• Interested in working on environmental issues? Want to run for Student Government? Join a fraternity? Check out “Expo,” the Student Organization and Involvement Fair between 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Aug. 22 in the Quadrangle on North Campus. Booths, giveaways, food and lots of information will be available.
• Pop violinist Josh Vietti will perform at 7 p.m. Aug. 23 in the Lee Theater at the Blanche M. Touhill Performing Arts Center.
• The UPB Welcome Back Party will begin at 7 p.m. Aug. 24 in Oak Hall on South Campus.

As for moves around campus, Carolyn Kuo, managing interior designer at UMSL, has been moving the Gender Studies program out of 211 Clark and into its new digs at 494 Lucas Hall.

“We should have the new space for Gender Studies painted, carpeted and moved by Aug.17,” Kuo said. “The meeting space furniture will arrive in six weeks or so.”

The space in Clark Hall will become the new Veterans/ROTC Center, Kuo said; painting and new furniture for the vets “will be on its way once the dust settles.”

On South Campus, Jonathan Lidgus, director of residential life and housing, wanted to talk about the newly renovated chapter house for Delta Zeta sorority at 8300 Natural Bridge Road. Lidgus said all three UMSL sororities – Delta Zeta, Alpha Xi Delta and Zeta Tau Alpha – are now housed on campus.

“Delta Zeta really hasn’t had a chapter house in four years,” Lidgus said. “The renovations were completed with the help of Delta Zeta’s national chapter. It looks awesome inside, and we’ll be doing landscaping in the fall.”

Gary Prellwitz, general manager of Sodexo at UMSL, said food and supplies are ordered, new staff have been hired and training sessions were set for workplace safety, food safety and customer service.

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Maureen Zegel

Maureen Zegel

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