HIGH POINT, N.C., Aug. 13, 2018 – High Point University will welcome more than 1,500 new students, the largest number of new students in university history, as well as 5,200 total students, the university’s largest total enrollment, when classes begin on Aug. 21.
The university is also launching new academic programs and making progress on major construction projects. Updates are provided below.
New Academic and Athletic Facilities
The Nido and Mariana Qubein Arena, Conference Center and Hotel will have a formal ground breaking this fall. This is a $120 million facility that will house the HPU’s men’s and women’s basketball programs, as well as a venue for major events, speakers, concerts, entertainment, academic symposia and recreational activities. The Qubein Arena will be constructed on HPU’s main campus at the corner of Lexington Avenue and University Parkway. The arena will seat 4,500 spectators and include luxury suites, locker rooms, staff offices, concession stands, a merchandising area, media suite, film room, press conference room, weight room, athletic training room, hospitality area, high tech audio and video equipment, ticket office and practice gym.
The Conference Center will seat 2,500 visitors and will be a space for growing undergraduate and graduate programs, student groups and community organizations and have the ability to be subdivided into smaller venues with lighting, sound and video for state-of-the-art presentations.
A small, executive hotel will be located adjacent to the conference center to support a proposed hospitality management program and accommodate a growing number of requests by organizations who specifically want to tour the campus and experience HPU’s unique educational environment and culture. The hotel will provide 30 to 40 residential rooms with dining facilities and meeting rooms.
Construction on the Wanek School of Undergraduate Sciences continues taking shape with plans to be completed in fall 2019. It is the fifth new academic school established at HPU since 2005. This building is named in honor of Todd Wanek, the CEO of Ashley Furniture, and Karen Wanek, the president of Superior Fresh. This $65 million, 128,000-square-foot academic facility will be home to HPU’s flourishing science programs in biology, chemistry and physics. It is under construction next to the $120 million Congdon Hall, which opened in fall 2017 and has attracted nearly 500 new graduate students to become physical therapists, physician assistants and pharmacists. A crowd of more than 300 people helped celebrate the start of construction in spring 2018. The facility is set to be completed in fall 2019.
The Caine Conservatory is now officially under construction and is next to the Wanek School of Undergraduate Sciences. The conservatory will provide 15,000-square-feet of space for students and faculty to conduct botanical research and propagate plants for the Mariana H. Qubein Arboretum and Gardens. A classroom, working greenhouse, new eatery and planting display space for the community at large will be housed in the facility.
The new intramural sport fields are nearing completion on the corner of Centennial Street and International Avenue. The fields were moved to make way for the Qubein Arena. The fields are 96,000 square feet in size and have Bermuda grass as turf.
In spring 2018, HPU’s President Dr. Nido Qubein announced the hiring of Hall of Famer and NCAA Championship Winning Coach Orlando ‘Tubby’ Smith as the Panther’s head coach for men’s basketball. He will lead his first season with HPU this semester.
Expanded Career and Professional Opportunities
HPU’s Career and Professional Development Office is introducing “Fast Fridays.” This event will provide open workshops from noon to 1 p.m. on a variety of topics such as, interview prep, resume building, LinkedIn profile building and more to further engage students in their career and professional development process. This supplements their additional offerings of one-on-one advising appointments, Career Expos, Focus Fairs and Boutique Fairs. These programs have led 96 percent of graduates begin their careers or graduate school within six months of earning their HPU degree.
The “Employer Spotlight Series” event, allows an employer to set up shop weekly inside Cottrell Hall’s career center to not only network with the students, but educate them in the job seeking process.
New Majors and Programs
HPU is offering finance as its own major in the School of Business this year. Cyber security is a new track within computer sciences. Data analytics and statistics is a new track within the Department of Mathematics major.
Because its common nationally for new students to not know what they want to study, HPU continues to offer its “Project Discovery” program that began last year. HPU proactively implemented a program via Success Coaches to guide students to the right path.
Expanded In Residence Program
HPU expands its list of global leaders and innovators who serve in residence to mentor students. Journalist in Residence Byron Pitts and Corporate Educator in Residence Scott McKain join Netflix Co-Founder Marc Randolph, HPU’s Entrepreneur in Residence and Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak, HPU’s Innovator in Residence. HPU’s in residence programs invites professionals to campus to help mentor and teach the students about real life professional environments. Other members include, Bloomberg TV anchor Betty Liu as HPU’s Media Entrepreneur in Residence and Karen Jacobsen the “GPS Girl” as Global Artist in Residence.
The Common Experience strengthens the intellectual climate on campus and increases student success by bridging academic and residence life. The program facilitates meaningful, thoughtful interaction among campus members through an examination of a topic or issue that requires interdisciplinary thought and collaborative action. This programming also includes a “common read,” a book which provides a framework for discussion and which every member of the freshman class reads.
This year’s Common Read is Celeste Headlee’s “We Need to Talk: How to Have Conversations That Matter.” Text messaging. Email. Social media. Today, there are more means to communicate than ever before. Despite these technological advances, studies show that Americans feel less connected and more divided. In “We Need to Talk,” Headlee outlines the techniques that have made her a better conversationalist—and offers simple tools that can improve anyone’s communication.
About the New Class
In addition to HPU’s largest freshman class, 20 percent are first generation college students. The students are from 43 states, citizens of 30 countries and born in 37 countries.