Welcome to Campus: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Set to Host Family Weekend Oct. 19-21
As the leaves turn color and the cool autumn weather settles
in, more than 4,400 people are expected to visit campus this
weekend to celebrate Family Weekend. Parents, family members,
alumni, and friends will have an opportunity to get a glimpse
of life and the changes taking place at Rensselaer through a
variety of cultural offerings and performances, academic
classroom programs, tours, dinners, film screenings, and
“As an embodiment of the Clustered Learning, Advocacy, and
Support for Students (CLASS) initiative, we have events for
each class year, events in the residence halls, celebrations of
student achievement with all five schools participating in some
way and each is an opportunity for parents to connect with
their students and for both to connect with the Rensselaer,”
said Louis Trzepacz, class dean for the Class of 2014, who is
also serving as chair for Family Weekend.
“Most important, for our first-year families the weekend
carves out a formal space for parents to recognize their
students’ hard work,” Trzepacz added. “For our upper class
parents, the weekend provides an opportunity for a celebration
of the significant milestones in their students’ lives, such as
the class ring or impending graduation.”
The annual event – hosted by the Office of the Student
Experience – attracts thousands to the Troy campus to
experience the season and life at Rensselaer and within the
President Shirley Ann Jackson will officially kick off
Family Weekend with the Presidential Welcome on Saturday, Oct.
20. President Jackson will share the recent progress and
accomplishments taking place at Rensselaer. The program will be
held from 9 to 9:30 a.m., in the Curtis R. Priem Experimental
Media & Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) Theater.
Additional highlights of this year’s events include a
football game vs. Hobart College, a women’s hockey game vs.
Union College, and numerous student performances and
To celebrate academic achievement, the Honors Convocation
ceremony will take place on Saturday, Oct. 20, from 10 a.m. to
1 p.m. in the EMPAC concert hall. Parents, family, and friends
will have an opportunity to look on as more than 330 Rensselaer
Medalists, students with a 4.0 GPA, undergraduate awardees,
graduate fellowship awardees, and faculty members are honored
during the ceremony.
For individuals interested in getting a glimpse of the
diverse cultures on campus, the annual International Festival
event showcasing more than 20 different countries and cultures
representing the Rensselaer Union international student
organizations and individual members of the Rensselaer campus,
will take place on Oct. 20 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event —
to be held in the Rensselaer Union McNeil Room — features
traditional food, clothing, photos, and more from countries
around the world.
Also on Oct. 20, the Family Weekend Fall Fest Celebration
will take place from noon to 3 p.m. in East Campus Athletic
Village. The free community event is for students, faculty, and
staff; families and friends of students on campus; and the
surrounding community. The event brings together performers,
food vendors, crafters, and children’s activities. Area
businesses and community organizations will also
Trzepacz also noted that in planning Family Weekend,
distance and prior commitments may prevent some families from
making the trip to campus, several new programs were introduced
so that families could connect with their student.
For example, Sodexo is providing three specialty care
packages for purchase that students will pick up during Family
Weekend. Package offerings include a New York state gift basket
featuring local products in harvest, apple chips, seasonal
candy, harvest jam, and local apples; a New York state fall
apple basket; or a cider donut tray.
In addition, families had the option of sending a special
message to their student via the Jumbotron in the ECAV Arena.
The message would appear during the Women’s Hockey game against
Union College scheduled for Oct. 20.
Overall, more than 70 events have been planned for the
weekend to highlight the many facets of Rensselaer. In addition
to campus visitors, students, staff, and faculty are welcome
and encouraged to attend any of the open programs throughout
Finalized schedules will be available at the Welcome Desk in
the Rensselaer Union on Friday, Oct. 19, from 10 a.m. to 7
p.m., and on Saturday, Oct. 20, from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. For
more information, and to view a preliminary schedule, visit: http://se.rpi.edu/familyweekend/
Contact: Jessica Otitigbe
Phone: (518) 276-6050