By Brian Blackwell, Baptist Message staff writer
PINEVILLE, La. (LBM) – Louisiana College experienced a move-in day unlike any other in its history Wednesday, Aug. 12.
The usual flow of incoming students was instead only staggered groups that moved into dorm rooms, and all were encouraged to wear masks and observe proper social distancing because of novel coronavirus pandemic concerns. Schools officials reported less than 250 incoming freshmen participated in move-in day, and were assisted by upperclassmen, faculty members and church groups.
Another 50 will commute from home this semester.
Wednesday’s move-in day kicked off Welcome Week, a time of orientation and numerous activities that will include “The Awakening” revival featuring evangelist Curtis Zachary Aug. 14-17, 6:30 p.m., inside Guinn Auditorium. Upperclassmen will return to campus this weekend, and classes will resume Aug. 17.
While final enrollment numbers will not be available until later in the semester, LC President Rick Brewer is optimistic the school will enroll at least 300 new freshmen for the fourth consecutive year.
He asked Louisiana Baptists to pray for students as they begin classes and noted that 70 students professed their faith in Christ during the 2019-2020 academic year.
“There will be scores of students on this campus this semester who need Jesus,” he said. “We are a mission field. There are also scores on this campus who know Jesus. So we put them together and we teach from a Christ-centered position. Our mission here is to be a Christ-centered community committed to academic excellence where students are equipped for a life of learning, leading and serving.”
Among the new students excited about the upcoming school year was Max Hunter.
“It’s cool to finally get on campus,” Hunter said. “This signals a new beginning. I’m looking forward to starting something new on my life’s journey.”
Jennifer Hurst had mixed emotions as she was taking her belongings into Cottingham Hall women’s dormitory.
“I’m eager to get situated and started on my path to a career in nursing,” Hurst said. “I hope to learn a lot and grow a lot as a person the next few years.”