New Wagner College president welcomes freshmen on move-in day
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — There were smiles, cheers and a few tears as members of the Wagner College Class of 2023 arrived on the Grymes Hill campus on Thursday to begin the next chapter of their lives.
Families from across the country and beyond began arriving in front of the Harborview Hall dormitory to begin their four-year college experience not long after sunrise.
Music blared from speakers outside the building, and students cheered as cars pulled up. Freshmen were whisked away to see their new dorm rooms, while student volunteers helped parents unload their vehicles.
It marked the first freshmen move-in day at Wagner for new President Joel Martin, who was appointed on July 1.
“This is so exciting,” Martin said. “They’ve been thinking about this moment for many years, their parents — for a long, long time. We’re glad they chose Wagner so we want them to have a great experience here.”
He said he has been looking forward to greeting parents and students, welcoming them the same way he and his wife Jan have been welcomed into the community.
“And let the parents know that we’re going to do everything we can to provide a wonderful experience for their children,” he added.
WHAT’S ON TAP?
The newly appointed president said he would spend his first few months learning the culture of Staten Island and Wagner College.
“We’re both new to this community so I’ll be learning it, immersing myself in it and coming to appreciate its virtues and values and its potential,” Martin said. “I’ll gain greater awareness of its challenges. What’s possible here, what’s working well here. Then we can pivot in the new year after some deep immersion toward some sort of sense of what’s next for Wagner together as a community.”
He has been meeting with other educators and city officials in the borough, including William J. Fritz, president of the College of Staten Island, and Ed Burke, the deputy borough president. He has also reached out to alumni, who have shared their own experiences and perspectives of the college.
“The unified factor is people love Wagner,” he said. “This is the thing confirming for us that we made a good choice. It’s just been remarkable the affection people have for this place is so strong, and that stands out. It’s genuine, it’s real. As the president, you want to be part of a community that people prize, and so it’s just nice to have that reinforcement. We want to maintain that momentum.”
CLASS OF 2023
Here are some fun facts about Wagner’s Class of 2023:
- The 421 students include 51 transfer students and 80 second-degree bachelor’s students.
- The new freshmen hail from at least 30 states, and 17 countries, including: Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Israel, Kenya, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain and United Arab Emirates.
- The longest journey by a freshman to Grymes Hill, worldwide, was from Australia — more than 10,000 miles way.
- Outside New York, the states represented by the most students include New Jersey, California, Florida, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Maryland.