Arrival of Freshmen Marks Start of New Plan

Wake Forest University is preparing for the arrival of approximately 950 freshmen on Wednesday, Aug. 21, who will be the first to take part in the university’s new Plan for the Class of 2000.

A blueprint for enriching undergraduate education, the wide-ranging plan calls for providing IBM laptop computers and newly-designed seminars to all freshmen, beginning with this year’s Class of 2000. Some other provisions include adding more faculty positions, increasing financial aid, creating new opportunities for students to assist faculty on research, and continuing to upgrade facilities.

The idea behind the plan is to reinforce Wake Forest’s long commitment to individualized instruction, small classes and mentoring by senior faculty, according to Paul Escott, dean of the College. Its high-tech features, which include enabling students to access the Internet with their IBM ThinkPads from virtually anywhere on campus, are intended to equip students with modern tools to pursue a liberal arts education.

About half of the freshmen class will pick up their computers on Aug. 26 in Reynolds Gymnasium. The others arranged during the summer to receive them at home. All are being provided with specially-created compact discs that walk them through the basics of the computers and their software, including Windows 95.

The freshmen will fill multimedia classrooms across campus on Aug. 27 for orientation sessions that will provide more detailed introductions to the new technology. Throughout the year, the students will have several opportunities to attend other sessions designed to strengthen their computer skills.

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