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Gone To Texas: Texas-sized welcome for new students marks start of academic year

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Gone To Texas at The University of Texas at Austin is likely to bring together a lot of students named Michael and Lauren to sing and dance on the Main Mall during the university’s traditional welcoming celebration at 8 p.m. on Aug. 28, the evening before classes begin on Aug. 29.

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Gone To Texas takes place Tuesday, Aug. 28 at 8 p.m. on the university’s Main Mall. Experience Gone To Texas 2006 with these 12 photos.

Michael and Lauren are at the top of the list of names of incoming freshmen admitted to the university for the 2007 fall semester, according to statistics from the Office of Admissions. The figures, based on the number admitted but not necessarily enrolled, show that 189 or about 3 percent of the 6,378 male freshmen are named Michael and 158 or about 2 percent of the 7,403 female freshmen are named Lauren. Actual enrollment figures will be released after the 12th day of classes.

Alongside the Michaels and Laurens at Gone To Texas, there likely will be many other students with namesakes. The other most frequently seen names on the list of admitted students include Sarah, Elizabeth, Jennifer and Amanda, as well as Christopher, Matthew, Daniel and David.

Regardless of their names, students attending Gone To Texas can expect to have fun at the annual event for incoming freshmen, transfer, graduate and law students. In addition to live music, dance groups, cheerleaders and a finale by the Longhorn Band, the students will receive greetings from student leaders, faculty members and administrators. The alternate location for the celebration, if rain occurs, will be Gregory Gymnasium.

Star from Gone To Texas logoAdvice for New Students

Make school a priority but don’t let it keep you from building lasting relationships with new people. Cling to your passions. You don’t have to impress anyone, make yourself happy. Find the things you love and gain as much experience with these things as possible.

Andrea Correa
B.S. Speech/Language Pathology
Salado, Texas

Keep an open mind and try to meet as many people as you can. You never know when a connection made during orientation leads to a lifelong friendship or a unique career later on down the line.

Erik Locascio
B.A. English
Sugar Land, Texas

Read much more from Advice for New Students on the Gone To Texas Web site.

“Gone To Texas is a UT tradition on the night before classes begin,” said William Powers Jr., president of the university. “We welcome freshmen and new students to our campus and make them feel at home. This gives students a chance to meet classmates from Texas and all over the world, while learning about UT and campus life. I invite every new student to join their fellow students on the Main Mall for Gone To Texas.”

Presented by the Office of the President with support and sponsorship by the University Co-op, Gone To Texas is an annual welcoming event based on a chapter in the history of the migration to Texas. More than 100 years ago, as adventurers pulled up stakes seeking a fresh start, three letters etched on homestead doors revealed their destination. “GTT” was written on the doors of people indicating they had “Gone To Texas.”

As a part of the celebration, many colleges and schools host programs prior to the university-wide celebration. A list of the pre-event activities by schools and colleges may be viewed online.

A live broadcast of Gone To Texas will begin at 8 p.m. on Aug. 28 on channel 45 of the campus cable system. The program also may be viewed from a remote location via a live webcast. Information on how to link to the GTT webcast is available online. Live streaming will begin at 7:45 p.m. on Aug. 28.

By Robert D. Meckel

Gone To Texas photos: Office of Public Affairs

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  Updated 18 December 2007
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