New class of Pomeroys enters the front gate on Move-In Day

August 20th, 2015 | SMWC

The sunshine slipped through the trees and danced on the Avenue this morning as a new class of Pomeroys entered the front gate of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College (SMWC). President Dottie King, Ph.D., personally greeted each student that arrived. The students – who arrived with their parents, grandparents, siblings and friends, ready to help move in all of the belongings that they chose to bring with them – received a handshake from the president and a fond welcome from the SMWC staff members who lined the Avenue, cheering as each car passed. Move-In Day at SMWC is a time for new students to get settled in and is the official kick-off of Orientation Weekend.

Incoming freshman, Kristin Foster, of Metropolis, Ill., was very impressed with the welcome on the Avenue. “That was wonderful. I actually saw someone that I knew, and it just made me feel right at home!”

Ashley Fern, nursing major, and mother Mary Krienke Fern, 1992 SMWC alum
Ashley Fern, nursing major, and mother Mary Krienke Fern, 1992 SMWC alum

Foster could barely put into words how she was feeling. “So many emotions, I’m excited and I’m nervous, but I’m mostly excited,” said Foster, music major and Saint Mother Theodore Guerin Scholar. “The atmosphere here and the history of the College are so incredible. I’m really looking forward to building my character while I’m here at The Woods.”

These new residential students wasted no time unloading their cars, with the help of current SMWC students, and unpacking their lives into their new home in Le Fer Hall.

Ashley Fern, nursing major from Oswego, Ill., stood in her new room with her mother, Mary Krienke Fern, who also attended SMWC in 1992. When asked what it felt like to attend the same college her mother did, Fern said, “I think it’s unique. It will help us bond. Give us a connection.”

Ashley also has a cousin, Elizabeth Fern, who graduated from SMWC in 2006, and an aunt, Heidi Fern, who graduated from SMWC in 2001.

Renee and Kayece Stuck, mother and daughter commuter students
Renee and Kayece Stuck, mother and daughter commuter students

A mother and daughter pair with a unique story were also at The Woods for orientation. Renee and Kayece Stuck, mother and daughter from West Terre Haute, Ind., are both commuter students this year and will even be taking a class together. Renee is majoring in social work, and Kayece is majoring in early childhood development and is also a recipient of the Terre Haute Catholic Charities Scholarship.

“She supports me a lot,” said Kayece. “And she helps me with my homework,” added Renee.

Taking classes together isn’t a first for the pair. They also both attended Ivy Tech Community College together where Renee obtained her associate’s degree in human services.

Madison Miller, of Clinton, Ind., biology major and Saint Mother Theodore Guerin scholar, said, “I’m most excited to meet new people.” Miller plans to become a veterinarian. 

Camille Ulery
Camille Ulery, medical technology major, with her parents, Mary Walker Ulery, 1991 SMWC graduate, and Jeff Ulery

For some students, today is their first day at SMWC, but not their first day of college life. A transfer student, Ashley Todd, of Linton, Ind., is majoring in nursing.

“I like the environment, and I like the people. I’ve heard a lot of great things about it, and I’m excited to start the nursing program,” she said.

Of the new students this year, 23 of them are athletes. Camille Ulery, of Lafayette, Ind., medical technology major, is excited to play softball at The Woods. Her mother Mary Walker graduated  from the campus program in 1991.

“To come back here is pretty cool. My mom tells me all these stories and says I’m going to have so much fun,” said Ulery.

Class of 2019 Stats

  • 99 new students
  • 99% female, 1% male
  • 23 athletes
  • The majority of students are from Indiana, Illinois, Missouri and Ohio, and two students traveled about 800 miles from Charleston, S.C.
  • International students: Taiwan, China and Vietnam.
  • Average GPA: 3.17
  • SMWC awarded just over $900,000 in merit awards.
  • Top three programs: education, nursing and equine.