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Students socialize with Savoie over popsicles and popcorn

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Students showing their Ragin' Cajun Pride at Pops with the President event at the President's Residence on Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019.

On Thursday, Aug. 29, the University Program Council (UPC) held an event known as “Pops with the President” at 3 p.m.

The event provided popsicles and popcorn and allowed the students to meet University of Louisiana at Lafayette President Joseph Savoie and start to get involved with the UPC.

The event was held at the president’s house under a large awning with fans blowing and music playing to encourage students to come outside in the middle of August.

Those who came to help make the event possible, such as Nick Villaume, the owner of Boombox Frozen Pops and Ice Cream said he enjoyed being there and explained why they came out.

“We were invited to come out and hand out pops to the students that are coming out to the event,” Villaume said. “We love coming out to Lafayette. We love the campus over here.”

Some students, both before and after Savoie came, were enthusiastic about the event as well, and explained why they enjoyed it.

Maddie Corvers, a hospitality management major, said, “I think it’s a really good opportunity to get to know our president, Mr. Savoie, it’s another chance for kids to get involved. I think it’s a good thing for them to put it on because it’s important for the President to be involved and to know us, maybe not on a name basis, but be able to communicate with us.”

However, some students thought that it could have been better.

“I think it’s really cool,” Samantha Heston, a marketing major, said, “I mean I’m kinda sad that there aren’t more people here.”

Those who ran the event explained how the event came together and its importance.

“We looked at the events during the first week of school, during our welcome week, and said, ‘What do we think students would like? What do we think is missing? Maybe something new and different that students would like,’” Karli Sherman, the assistant director of student engagement and leadership commented.

“So the President of UPC, her name is April, she wanted to do something that would connect the students and President Savoie together. He’s obviously the President, an authority figure. He’s our administrator, and something like this allows us to actually interact with him,” Sherman said.

Savoie himself then shared a few words about the importance of the event.

“I think it’s great, and I know it’s a part of Welcome Week, and we tried to make sure that students, particularly new students, feel like a part of what’s going on on campus and of course get a chance to know one another and have a little fun,” Savoie said.

“I think it’s great. It’ll get rid of some of the anxiety, that freshmen anxiety, and make people feel more welcome, and it’s really all about relationships.”

President Savoie then gave some advice for incoming freshmen.

“Go to class, number one. Do your work, don’t fall behind. It’s a lot easier to keep up than it is to catch up.”

Lastly, he explained why he loves to go to these events and be around the students.

“Students keep you young; they keep you busy. They make you explain yourself, which is a good thing. I like all the activity and all the enthusiasm, it’s very positive.”

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