Thirty-four Catawba College freshmen and 13 members of a college leadership team of upper class students, faculty and staff spent two and a half days participating in the June Lilly Center Freshman Retreat. The retreat, which allowed the incoming students an opportunity to explore what it means to be a college student and how to be successful in one's college experience, was held June 22-24 at Johns River Valley Camp in Collettesville, N.C.
Catawba College President Brien Lewis joined the group upon their return to campus on June 24. He officially commissioned the incoming students as members of the Catawba College Class of 2016 in front of parents and family members gathered in the Omwake-Dearborn Chapel.
One of the retreat participants, Johnathon Boles '16 of Mocksville, summed it up well when he shared his reflections upon returning from the retreat. He remarked, "Yes, we had lots of fun as we tubed down the river, climbed rock outcroppings, sang countless songs on the bus ride, slid down the rock slide at the waterfalls and played countless games, but the really important thing that happened on this retreat was what we learned about ourselves and how that will help us as we begin this college experience, the friendships we made and the tools we now have that will serve us going forward."
A second 2012 freshman retreat for incoming members of Catawba's Class of 2016 is scheduled for August 8-10 at Johns River Valley Camp. Freshmen students who have been accepted for admission and paid their admission deposit will be eligible to attend.
August retreat participants will gather at 1:00 p.m. in Tom Smith Auditorium in Ketner Hall on Wednesday, August 8, but can move into their residence halls between 9:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. prior to departing for the retreat. The retreat concludes at 4:00 p.m. on Friday, August 10. Parents may join students for the final session held on campus beginning at 3:00 p.m. Students will be permitted to spend Friday night in their residence hall rooms.
The cost for the retreat, including transportation, lodging, and meals, is being underwritten by The Lilly Center for Vocation and Values at Catawba College, made possible through a grant from The Lilly Endowment. There will be no cost to participants (other than transportation to the campus). To hold space, students are asked to register online and send a $50.00 check, which will be held and returned in full to the student at the completion of the retreat.