Convocation: The freshmen have landed


Emily Fillpot didn’t know what to expect when she stepped foot on ULM’s campus.

She did know she was ready to be a Warhawk, and Convocation confirmed her idea.

Fillpot, the University Seminar 1001 Peer Leaders and over 1300 other freshman walked the annual march from the library bell tower to the coliseum for the 2018 Fall Convocation ceremony.

The event is designed for first-time students to get acquainted with ULM academics and spirit life while catching a first glimpse of their march to graduation in 2022.

The walk was long but Fillpot, a pre-occupational therapy student, felt that it was an experience worth experiencing. 

The Freshmen fill the coliseum and listened to Ahmaad Solmone, assistant director of student recruitment, introduce the vice president of student affairs, Dr. Judy Fellows and the keynote speaker Cleveland Mouton III, a former ULM student and now youngest principal in northeast Louisiana. 

He filled the eager students’ ears with empowering words and told the freshman it was important to start on the right foot in college and listen to any advice.

He ended the speech by encouraging the freshmen to get involved and stay involved.

His speech was followed by a short speech from 31 Ambassadors president Maurie Weldon. She informed the incoming class of 2022 about the 31 Ambassadors organization and encouraged the students to not only get involved with on-campus student life but to also get to know the alumni of this university.

She then introduced the freshman to the “class of 2022” buttons that were to be passed out at the pep rally portion of the ceremony.

The buttons were meant to serve as a marker for the students’ time at ULM. 

After the academic segment of the ceremony ended, the students were treated to free ice cream from Eskimoes. Their peer leaders then led them to Malone Stadium for their introduction to Warhawk spirit life.

This part of the ceremony included various speeches from ULM athletic coaches, the SGA President and CAB president and another speech from Assistant Director of Student Recruitment, Ahmaad Solmone.  After that, the Sound of Today, Hawkline and the ULM cheerleaders showcased their talents and spirit for the students. 

“I felt that this was a great opportunity for freshmen to get introduced to all of the things ULM has to offer,” said Fillpot.

She was excited that ULM did this for their incoming freshmen, and she really enjoyed the event. 

Freshmen weren’t the only people that benefitted from this experience, the peer leaders got to relive the convocation experience in a different way by leading their students to the first day of their time at ULM.

Univ 1001 peer leader Trey Jones said that this experience was the “greatest thing ever.”

The management and marketing student was excited to be given the opportunity to get involved with the first-year students.

He said the most inspiring moment of the convocation experience was seeing the students from his class bond and stay with each other throughout the whole ceremony.

Which is what he hopes the class of 2022 learns to do, stay with each other and help each other “take flight” into the greatest years of their lives.