Team-building activities united 25 incoming first-year students as part of the University’s inaugural Ram Academy, a three-day leadership orientation experience sponsored by the Office of Orientation and New Student Programs, and the Student Leadership and Involvement Office.

The freshmen explored leadership topics through the Social Change Model of Leadership, which looks at leaders as individuals, in a group and as members of society.

“The group formed a close-knit bond by the third day, and we expect that this group of incoming students will become very involved on campus right away,” said Karen Phillips, director of Orientation and New Student Programs.

The program, held at the Warren Conference Center in Ashland, was open to all freshmen who attended orientation in June.

The incoming students are: Guillermo Aguilluz, Lisa Belyea, Hana Berke, Dianna Bill, Nicholas Bonasoro, Tevin Cruz, Kelly Daniel, Nicole Dorsey, Lourdes Encarnacion, Jessica Ferguson, Taylor Gould, Hillary Guerrero, Maggie Jasurek-Parker, Madeleine McGreavy, Paige Monopoli, Kayla Mullarkey, Stephen Pina, Shannon Rose, Rebecca Rybczyk, Sheena Sabhanayak, Jonathan Stone, Maya Tracey, Jamilla Van Dyke-Bailey, Ariel Wilson and Lidia Zayas.

The group was led by student facilitators Mike Giannattasio, Alex Mellion, Michelle Medeiros, Robbie Waters, Carley Elder, Christina Webster and Lina Rodriguez.

In addition to Phillips, program organizers include Alexa Simeone, assistant director for Orientation and New Student Programs, Director of Student Leadership and Involvement Dave DeAngelis, Kyle Dooley, office coordinator for Student Leadership and Involvement, and Assistant Dean of Students John Silveria.