Writer: Jane Moorman, 505-249-0527, firstname.lastname@example.org
High school seniors who have made a commitment to attend a college and play on an athletic team sign letters of intent.
New Mexico State University’s College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences leadership says, “Why not have a similar commitment ceremony for their future students?”
“We’ve started a new tradition in our college to recognize high school seniors, and their families, who have decided they are going to make NMSU their undergraduate home,” said Jerry Hawkes, College of ACES interim associate dean of academic programs. “We are going to do this throughout our state.”
The next Future ACES Aggie Signing Day will be at 2 p.m. Friday, March 31, in conjunction with the New Mexico FFA State Career Development conference.
“You do not need to be a member of FFA to attend the March 31 Future ACES Aggie Signing event,” said Shannon Norris, recruiting and retention coordinator for the College of ACES. “All are welcome to the celebration on the Gerald Thomas lawn, 940 College Drive.”
The commitment signing is another symbolic event that the College of ACES has adopted in the last few years to build a sense of family in their college.
“A couple of years ago we started the Branding Ceremony of freshmen students so they would feel a part of our Sam Steel Society brand,” Hawkes said. “We also have started presenting Sam Steel Society pins to our graduates and alumni. Now we are welcoming our future students into our ACES family even before they get to campus.”
The first two signing events were held in Santa Fe during the New Mexico Legislative Ag Fest Feb. 7, and the New Mexico Family Career & Community Leaders of America conference in Albuquerque March 2. Sixteen future freshmen have participated.
“These events are really a lot of fun,” said Anthony Chavez, president of the Sam Steel Society advisory council. “We are showing the parents we are excited that their kids are coming to NMSU. And in turn the parents know that the college will look out for their kids.”
During each signing event the future Aggie’s major interest is shared during their introduction. Members of the college’s leadership team and alumni association welcome them to the signing table. After signing a commitment certificate, the high school senior selects an ACES cap, puts it on and then responds to the command “Guns Up” as Pistol Pete joins in the celebratory photographs.
The future Aggie has signed a certificate that declares they have “chosen to continue their path of discovery” at NMSU.
“We are celebrating the student’s next step in life,” Chavez said. “Everyone really enjoys this activity. The parents are proud of their student and so are we.”
© 2013 New Mexico State University Board of Regents
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