Georgia Southern University

Fall First Year Experience Success Series gets underway

The First Year Experience (FYE) Success Series program at Georgia Southern has a full slate of activities for first year students. ‘First Year Experience designed the Success Series with an eye toward helping students avoid some of the out-of-class pitfalls that can derail a student’s academic and personal success at the University,” said Chris Caplinger, director of the First Year Experience. ‘Some of the series events are returning to campus after receiving very positive reviews from students, while others were throughly researched and chosen by the FYE Council. Students can expect an engaging presentation from each of the speakers in the series.”

‘Sex Signals” is back. It provides an insightful, educational and provocative look into issues of sexual assault and date rape, focusing on the college experience. The play blends a unique combination of improvisation, humor and audience participation as a means of engaging college audiences into an honest discussion about an otherwise difficult subject without becoming threatening or pedantic. This year will be the program’s fifth year performing at Georgia Southern. Performances will be held Wednesday, Aug. 23, at 3:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. and on Thursday, Aug. 24, at 12:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. All performances are held in the Russell Union Ballroom.

After publicly battling her alcohol problems on MTV’s ‘The Real World,” Ruthie Alcaide has come out on top. Since the show aired, she has overcome her issues and will talk about what happens when alcohol and drugs take over your life. She will also discuss her experience with alcohol poisoning and her road to recovery. Alcaide will conclude her talk with a question and answer session. Her presentation will be held in the Russell Union Ballroom on Tuesday, Aug. 29, at 3:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

On Tuesday, Sept. 5, and Wednesday, Sept. 6, at 3:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. in the Russell Union Ballroom ‘One Race, One People, One Peace” will be presented. This interactive performance looks at issues surrounding diversity. The presentation is part of the First Year Experience Series and is also sponsored by Institutional Compliance, the Multicultural Student Center and the President’s Office.

Author Patrick Combs will present ‘Major in Success” on Tuesday, Sept. 12, at noon, 3:30 p.m. and 7 p.m., as well as Wednesday, Sept. 13, at 3:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. All presentations will be held in the Russell Union Ballroom. In this presentation, Combs will teach students how to get the most out of college, tap into their passions and land a great job. He motivates students to take actions that create lasting, positive life changes. Combs keeps it highly interactive, exciting, and fun with giveaway items, props, computer graphics and audience games.

On Tuesday, Sept. 19, at 3:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. Peter Bielagus will present ‘Jump Start Your Personal Finances” in the Nessmith-Lane Building Assembly Hall and on Wednesday, Sept. 20, at 3:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. in the Russell Union Ballroom. He will explain how to fix credit report errors, discuss credit cards and their use, how to invest and more. Additionally, Bielagus will be available in the Union Commons to chat one-on-one Wednesday, Sept. 20, at a time to be determined. For more information on the speaker, visit his Web site at

Students will be challenged to ‘Dare to Declare”a major that is on Wednesday, Sept. 27 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Russell Union, Rooms 2080, 2084 and the first floor computer lab. There will be a series of interactive programs designed to open the door to the future. To attend, register by Friday, Sept. 22, by contacting Career Services at 681-5197 or by email at Students will have a chance to win cash prizes up to $200.

The ‘Save a Life Tour” will be on campus Wednesday, Oct. 25, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in the Russell Union Ballroom. All participants will begin the experience sober as ‘witnesses” of other drivers’ bad judgment and deteriorating driving skills due to alcohol consumption. Two additional large screen displays reveal what each driver sees, the face of the driver, a helicopter view of the driver’s vehicle in traffic and an indicator level of the driver’s impairment as it gradually worsens. True to real life, the drive usually ends in a serious accident. Every driver is served with a simulated citation as a powerful reminder of his or her ‘driving under the influence.”

At 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 25, Chris Sandy will present ‘From the College Bar Life to Life Behind Bars”in the Russell Union Theatre. Because of bad decisions he made about drinking and driving, Sandy killed two people and is currently serving a mandatory 13 year sentence in a Georgia maximum security correctional institution for vehicular homicide. Students are encouraged to come hear the ‘real deal” on drinking and driving from someone who knows what they’re talking about.

All presentations are free and orientation classes are strongly encouraged to attend.

For more information on each of these events, visit the First Year Experience Web site at

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