A&M's Gig'em Week Welcomes Ags

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COLLEGE STATION, Aug. 16, 2006 – New and returning Aggies are asked to “Catch the Aggie Spirit” during Gig'Em Week, the first week back on campus for many Texas A&M University students before the beginning of the fall semester. The week begins with Residence Hall Move-In Assistance Day on Sunday (Aug. 20) and continues through the following Sunday (Aug. 27) with Freshman Convocation. Fall semester classes start Aug. 28.

The week is full of events and opportunities for new and returning students to become familiar or reacquainted with the campus, fellow Aggies and the Bryan/College Station community, organizers say.

During the week, new students also will have an opportunity to attend workshops on topics such as “Make the Grades You Want,” “Using jobsforaggies.tamu.edu” and “Make Your Dollar Stretch,” along with various social activities.

The university has designated Sunday as Residence Hall Move-In Assistance Day and teams of volunteers, including Texas A&M President Robert Gates, administrators, faculty, staff and students, will be on hand to help students unload their belongings and move into their residence halls.

Also on Sunday, Freshman (or “Fish”) Orientation Week for the Corps of Cadets begins, while on Aug. 22-24, new-student conferences and the 54th Annual MSC Fall Leadership Conference are scheduled. At 8 p.m., the Catholic Student Association plans an ice cream social at St. Mary’s Catholic Center, and on Monday (Aug. 21) the Baptist Student Ministries plans a cookout and concert from 6 to 9 p.m. in the Academic Building Plaza. Also on Monday, the Regents Scholars orientation will be at 7 p.m. in Rudder Theater.

On Tuesday (Aug. 22), students can attend the Residence Hall Association (RHA) Aggiefest 2006 from 3-6 p.m. on Simpson Drill Field. Along with plenty of free food, students will have a chance to learn how to play “42” and horseshoes. This will be followed by The Association of Former Students’ annual "Hot Diggity Dog" cookout for the Class of 2010 from 6-8 p.m. at the Clayton W. Williams, Jr. Alumni Center. The Gig'Em Yell Practice will follow on the lawn of the president's home at 8 p.m. In addition to the yell leaders, the coaches and players from Aggie sports teams will be present.

On Wednesday (Aug 23), the Texas A&M Golf Course is offering “Freshman Free Play” from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. to give new freshmen a chance to try the campus golf facilities. An ice cream carnival, sponsored by the Aggie Orientation Leaders, will be held in Academic Plaza from 1-3 p.m. The carnival will include fun, games, giveaways and music. The day will conclude at 9 p.m. on Simpson Drill Field with a screening of the movie “Failure to Launch.” Organizers say students should bring their own blankets but the popcorn is free.

Students can vote for Aggieland's best pizza at the Seventh Annual Pizza Taste Off from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday (Aug. 24) in the Academic Plaza area. The pizza will be provided by local vendors and one of them will be selected as “Aggie Favorite.” It will be followed at 2 p.m. with “The Welcome Gig” at Multicultural Services in Room 137 of the Memorial Student Center. The event is sponsored by the Asian President’s Council, Black Student Advisory Council and the Hispanic President’s Council. These organizations are the unifying bodies for the various campus cultural and ethnic student organizations.

Students can also participate in the “Fish Swim” scavenger hunt from 6 to 7 p.m. and return at 9 p.m. for a dance under the stars. Both events will be held in the Academic Plaza.

Events planned for Friday (Aug, 25) include “Aggieland Market” from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Academic Plaza. The market is a great way for new students to get to know the Bryan/College Station Area because more than 70 community members, local businesses, campus ministries and area restaurants will be giving away information, sample merchandise and more, organizers note.

Billed by organizers as “The Aggie Campus Living Room,” the Student Programs Office will host a reception with free food, drinks and prizes and an opportunity to learn about campus student organizations from 4 to 6:30 p.m. in the SPO on the second floor of the Memorial Student Center.

The ExCEL (Excellence uniting Culture, Education and Leadership) “Luau at the Rec” is planned from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at the Student Recreation Center and will be followed by the ExCEL “Cultural Extravaganza” at 8 p.m. in Rudder Theater. Both events are part of the ExCEL Orientation Program for new minority freshmen at Texas A&M.

“Aggie Nights” will begin at 8 p.m. and continue until midnight in the MSC. The evening will include the ExCEL extravaganza, entertainment, free food and drinks, cash prizes, arts and crafts, movies, bowling, pool and live music.

The ExCEL orientation conference continues Saturday, along with games and free events sponsored by the Student Recreation Center and a Women’s Volleyball game with Morgan State at 6 p.m. in G. Rollie White Coliseum.

Rounding out Gig’Em Week will be Freshman Convocation for the Class of 2010 at 2:30 p.m. Sunday (Aug. 27) in Reed Arena.

A complete list of events can be found at http://studentlife.tamu.edu/nsp/gew/schedule.htm or by calling the Office of New Student Programs (979) 845-5826.