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As part of their introduction to UW Oshkosh,  incoming freshmen attend Odyssey programing to meet new people and learn what it really means to be a Titan.

One of the most anticipated events during the Fall 2011 Odyssey will be a speech given on Sunday, Sept. 4 by UW Oshkosh alumnus Jeffrey LaVicka ’99, of Morgantown, W. Va. A former radio-TV-film major at UW Oshkosh, LaVicka earned a law degree from the University of Arkansas, Little Rock School of Law. He recently was appointed as a federal administrative law judge.

“I’m looking forward to Jeff LaVicka speaking on Sunday,” Assistant Dean of Students Debbie Gray Patton said. “In addition to Jeff being an outstanding alum, he also worked on my staff when I was a RHD (Resident Hall Director).”

In his own words LaVicka gives this advice to today’s UW Oshkosh students: “Whatever you do, whatever your accomplishments or setbacks, if you wake up every day and are proud of who you are and for what you stand, you will be successful.”

Following the opening welcome from LaVicka, the week will be filled with important and fun events for new students including a welcome picnic, a let loose dance, free food and fun at Rec Fest located at the Student Recreation and Wellness Center (SRWC) and also the comedy of Paul Varghese, a semi-finalist on “Last Comic Standing.”

Later in the week, students will hear the motivating message of Judson Laipply, an inspirational comedian. Laipply will entertain and inform students as well as introduce them to his finale, “The Evolution of Dance.”

“Judson Laipply has been a huge hit with students in the past,” Gray Patton said. “He has a very inspirational, thought-provoking message, but he’s also hilarious.”

The activities and events that are part of the Odyssey orientation are designed for new students as a way to help them make connections and gain knowledge of what the campus has to offer.

“This year we are doing an activity called, ‘We are Titans,’” Gray Patton said. “It will give students a great opportunity to meet, interact and get to know each other, almost right off the bat. Getting to know other students can help someone feel connected here.”

After making new connections, students can check out Taste of UW Oshkosh. The event will give students a taste of the more than 165 student organizations on campus. Taste of UW Oshkosh offers lots of free stuff, information and a picnic on the front lawn of Dempsey Hall.

By the time classes start on Wednesday, Sept. 7, students will have the connections they need to make UW Oshkosh their home away from home.

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