AUSTIN, Texas—New students to The University of Texas at Austin will receive a Texas-size welcome Aug. 28 during Gone to Texas 2001 activities on the South Terrace of the Main Building. The 5th annual event provides students with a glimpse into the university’s many traditions and resources on the night before fall classes begin.
The Gone To Texas program begins at 8 p.m. and features welcoming remarks by University President Larry R. Faulkner. Members of the freshman honor societies, Phi Eta Sigma and Alpha Lambda Delta, will offer a special welcome to all who attend. Freshman interest group mentors and university orientation advisers will be official hosts.
University cheerleaders, Texas Pom, the Longhorn Band and University Innervisions gospel choral group will entertain students as will several dance groups, including Ballet Folklorico, the Roustabouts and Texas Dragon Dance Team. The Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity will drop the giant Texas flag from the fourth floor of the Main Building, and Bevo and Smokey the Cannon will be there. New students also will have an opportunity to learn "The Eyes of Texas."
The theme for the event this year is "You’re Texas."
"Each new student will play a big part in this institution and what it is," said Rod Caspers of the Office of Public Affairs. "We hope the students learn about campus life and traditions during Gone To Texas, but we also want them to go away knowing that their presence and contribution will have an important effect on the university. Most of all, we want to offer them a fun, friendly and meaningful Texas-size welcome."
Laser effects will be used at the end of the evening to symbolize the infusion of new student energy and to celebrate the arrival of all newcomers to the university campus, Caspers said.
A dance, featuring Grammy-award-winning band Brave Combo, will follow from 9 to 10:30 p.m. All incoming freshmen, transfer students and new graduate and law students are invited to Gone To Texas. In addition to providing music at the dance, Brave Combo also will play during the main part of the program.
More than 6,000 students attended the event last year. Gone To Texas is a centerpiece event around which a variety of welcoming activities by academic colleges and schools, university units and student organizations are planned. Offices and groups such as the Dean of Students Office, Housing and Food Service, Recreational Sports, Intercollegiate Athletics, the Texas Union, Ex-Students’ Association, Student Government, the Cabinet of College Councils and others offer programs designed to ease incoming students’ transition to a new and unfamiliar environment.
For the first time this year, the program will begin with new students entering in a processional by college and school.
There will be free water and Coca-Cola at the event. The University Co-op is donating Gone To Texas t-shirts and Austin Coca-Cola Bottling Co. is donating beverages. In the event of rain, festivities will be moved to the Texas Union.