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PennWest Clarion gears up for Welcome Weekend

August 15, 2022
Fireworks, flag-raising among festivities planned for new and returning students

PennWest Clarion will kick off the fall semester with a full slate of activities for students and families during Welcome Weekend 2022, Aug. 18-21.

The four-day celebration will feature new events and annual favorites – including Clarion’s always popular WINGO at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 19 in Eagle Commons.

"Welcome Weekend is the perfect opportunity to commemorate our new beginning as PennWest University, and we're thrilled to do so in a way that embraces the history and traditions of all three campuses," said Melissa Dunn, director of student development and Welcome Weekend lead. "There is always a special energy and excitement in the air as our students return home to campus, but this year, we have even more to celebrate."

First-year and transfer students will move into residence halls between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 18. Scores of faculty, staff and student volunteers will be on hand to direct traffic, greet students and their families, and help carry belongings to their rooms.

A series of information sessions will be held throughout the day Thursday, capped with music, games, nachos and shaved iced outside Gemmell Student Center from 8 to 10 p.m.

"For many students, this is the first time they will be living away from home," Dunn said. "Our goal is to make the transition as smooth as possible by providing ample opportunities for students to make social connections, explore available resources and get acclimated to life on campus."

Friday, Aug. 19, highlights include Academic Convocation at 10 a.m. in Marwick-Boyd, immediately followed at 11 a.m. by PlayFair team-building activities and a class photo in the multipurpose room of Gemmell Student Center. ThinkFast Gameshow is set for 9 p.m., also in Gemmell.

Returning students will move in to campus housing between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 20. Fireworks will blast off at 9 p.m., and a performance by FREE DAPS — a freestyle group of rappers and improvisers — will begin at 9:30 p.m. in the multipurpose room of Gemmell Student Center.

Simultaneous PennWest flag-raising ceremonies featuring short remarks by students and administrators will take place on the California, Clarion and Edinboro campuses at 12:30 p.m. Sunday. Clarion's event will be held at the flagpole between Carrier Administration Building and Starbucks.

An outdoor fair for clubs and organizations will follow from 1 to 3 p.m. outside Gemmell Student Center.

"PennWest is a place of boundless opportunities for our students," said Founding President Dr. Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson. "We are Vulcans, Golden Eagles and Fighting Scots. The flag-raising ceremony symbolizes that, together, we are a part of something even greater."

Fall semester classes begin Monday, Aug. 22.

For a complete schedule of Welcome Weekend events, visit

Last Updated 8/15/22