Mechelle Smith, who moved to Dearborn from Saginaw to attend UM-Dearborn, said the day was a no-pressure way to feel connected to campus as a new student.
Smith said one of her academic goals is to be a Michigan graduate — and UM-Dearborn had the criminal justice program she was interested in. Her career aspiration is to serve as a juvenile corrections officer one day.
“I know what it’s like to grow up in a difficult situation and come out on the other side,” said Smith, a veteran who joined the Army after high school. “I’ve completed my time in the Army and am ready to help kids who may have turned to the streets because they’ve had trauma, homelessness and more. I’m ready to be here and am looking forward to my classes — my Introduction to Criminal Justice course starts Monday.”
She said the events were also was a way for her to learn building locations and explore where her classes were located prior to the Fall 2022 semester beginning: “This is new, so I’m a little nervous. Seeing everything ahead of time helps me get prepared. Now I’m feeling ready.”
In addition to individually checking out campus buildings and getting a peek to where the different classrooms were located, the new students gathered as a large group, too.
The Wolverine Welcome Rally, which took place in the field outside of the College of Arts, Sciences, & Letters Building, featured cheers, the Michigan Fight Song and plenty of chatter as students got to know one another. Campus leaders introduced themselves, shared campus traditions and gave encouragement to the new Dearborn Wolverines.