The number of first-year and transfer students in the class of 2020
Lafayette’s 185th is one of the most academically powerful in the College’s history. But that’s only a small piece of what makes this leap of Leopards such an outstanding cohort. The new recruits hail from zero miles away (Easton) up to 9,808 (Newcastle, Australia). There are 10 legacy students, two national chess champions (from Pakistan and Zambia), and a polyglot who speaks five languages and is picking up two more. The most inspiring number of all? One hundred members of the class will be the first in their family to earn a college degree.
The number of student leaders @ welcome weeks
New campus. New faces. New home. New is exciting—but often overwhelming too. That’s why Lafayette kicked off its 2016 fall semester with two programs designed to ease students’ transition into college life. Before classes began, student leaders guided new Pards through a three-day orientation. Support continued in the first two weeks of classes with a new program called Welcome Weeks. The program was packed with activities—including Major Mixers and special weekend events—to help new students socialize, avoid homesickness, and feel more comfortable in their new surroundings.
The number of new signs installed across campus
Navigating the Lafayette environs just got a little easier. The new signage is part of a larger wayfinding enterprise launched back in 2013. Four decorative gateways were constructed to both mark and visually enhance the entrances to campus. “College Hill” also was painted on the Route 22 bridge overpass. The design of these signs incorporates decorative adornments called finials that match the existing cast-iron light posts found throughout campus. Both finials and fixtures were generously donated to the College by Alan Brink ’70, owner of Spring City Lighting in Spring City, Pa.
The age of Lafayette’s oldest surviving alumnus
Howard Lindemann graduated in 1932 with a B.S. in physics. “Going to Lafayette helped establish my reputation,” says Lindemann from his retirement community in Hackettstown, N.J. “It helped me spend my life in engineering.” A ROTC and rifle team member at Lafayette, Lindemann earned his master’s in physics from Cornell University and worked for the National Electrical Instrument Company on Long Island during World War II, manufacturing a lens used in military instruments. He eventually founded his own optical lens company. He donates to the College each year: “It’s a matter of loyalty.”
The number of Commons created for the class of 2020
As part of a new initiative to build community and strengthen connections to the College’s history and traditions, first-year students have been assigned to one of five communities, each named for a ship the Marquis de Lafayette sailed on from France to America (Alliance, Brandywine, Cadmus, Hermione, Victoire). Together, each Commons group participates in events and competitions such as intramural sports, socials, life skills programs, and advisory sessions with upper-class peers. It’s part of the College’s new Connected Communities, which has the goal of better linking students’ academic, social, co-curricular, and personal experiences.