First-year class includes variety of talents, backgroundsSPARTANBURG, S.C.
– There are some things you should know about the Wofford College Class of 2013 – and just about all first-year college students this year: They can all do the Macarena and Blockbuster Video was one of their favorite childhood destinations.
If that’s not enough, they probably can name every character from “Saved by the Bell,” and they’re still wondering “Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego?”
Wofford welcomed 409 new students as classes for the 2009-10 academic year began today (Monday, Sept. 7, 2009); 392 are first-year students - from a record 2,427 applications - and 17 transferred to the college.
Fifty-eight percent of the incoming class ranked in the top 10 percent of their high school classes; 83 percent came from the top 20 percent. One in every 17 was valedictorian or salutatorian of their high school classes.
Four were National Merit Scholars, and 58 were Boys’ or Girls’ State delegates. Sixty-two have signed National Letters of Intent to participate in athletics, and 144 were captain of a team in high school.
The first-year class comes from 24 states, with 39 percent hailing from outside of South Carolina.
Six freshmen are international students, coming from Lithuania, Rwanda, the United Kingdom, Moldova and Hungary. The largest number of students of color – 66 – are entering Wofford this year, representing 17 percent of the class.
Seventeen are the first in their families to attend college; 88 have had relatives attend Wofford, and one is a fifth-generation Wofford attendee.
The typical member of the Class of 2013 is a child of the 1990s – a child who has never known a world without the World Wide Web; a child whose parents likely fought (maybe literally) the crowds to secure the much-sought-after Tickle Me Elmo.
Pokemon was one of their playmates, as masters of the hand-held video games. One member of Wofford College’s Class of 2013 is a Pokemon master. Another enjoys a different kind of hand-held – the older, yet still challenging Rubik’s Cube, which he can solve in under a minute.
Wofford’s new students include:
• The great-great-great-great-nephew of college founder Benjamin Wofford
• The great-great-great-grandson of Samuel Dibble, Wofford’s first graduate, Class of 1856
• The founder of a national non-profit, Need to Read, that promotes reading in middle schools
• Another who founded Get the Point, a charitable group that collects dance clothing and equipment for underfunded dance programs
• A student who ran a marathon to show support for mandatory physical education in her school
• A circus performer who can juggle, clown and do aerial acrobatics
• A Civil War re-enactor
• A Korean folk dancer
• A national magazine cover model
• The South Carolina state player of the year in soccer
• A member of the National Piano Guild
• A top 20 scorer on a National French Exam
• One who called a play in the NFL’s Pro Bowl; it was a flea flicker for a 48-yard gain
• A star of a Super Bowl half-time commercial
• One who plays six musical instruments – by ear
• Miss America’s Outstanding Teen
• Several certified SCUBA divers
• A competitive cycler
• An Alaskan wilderness backpacker, and another who backpacked the Sierra Nevada
• One who has traveled five continents and 40 countries
• A member of a wash tub band
• Recipient of a National Presidential Service Award for her essay on Somali refugees
• The founder of the Lumberjack Club