K Week: Kicking Off Your Kentucky Story

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 18, 2016)  Joining the college world can be an overwhelming rush of nerves, excitement or a combination of both for a recent high school graduate. During the first week of college, students begin meeting new people, finding their way around campus and learning the traditions and ways of being part of the University of Kentucky community. To ease this transition, 300 of UK's best student leaders, called K Crew leaders, are here to assist new Wildcats during one exciting week - K Week.

This year, K Week takes place from Aug. 19 through Aug. 27. Students will not only have the opportunity to participate in the 175+ events offered, but this week will be a time where students will learn just what it means to truly be a Wildcat. During K Week, the class of 2020 will receive the best pieces of advice for how to navigate through their time at the university.

From study tips to joining student organizations; from the best spots to eat on campus to learning to grow and better as a student – UK has the top 10 pieces of advice for the class of 2020.

"During K Week there are so many opportunities to learn about all of the different organizations on campus," said Madison Rose, recent graduate of UK.

There are more than 600 different and unique organizations on campus, offering countless chances for new students to find just where they feel at home and where each individual can branch out. Students will be surrounded with opportunity to get involved throughout K Week, especially during Campus Ruckus and the K Week Spectacular, which are two events geared specifically toward highlighting student organizations that live on campus.

"It is 100 percent okay to be yourself, whether that means you're a little weird, or a little lazy, or you really like your sleep or you need to have coffee alone, by yourself at Starbucks…I think it's 100 percent okay to be yourself," said Lauren Henrickson, recent graudate of UK. "I think incoming freshmen shouldn't hold back with who they are, and they should go for the opportunities that are available to them."

Some students, such as Chanel Friday, a recent UK graduate, didn't hold back her freshman year as she became involved right off the bat. Friday, being an out-of-state student, didn't know a single person when she arrived on campus. Her biggest advice is for incoming freshmen to jump at opportunity as soon as they get to UK.

"Definitely for the incoming freshmen I would encourage them to get involved right away," said Friday. "But beyond that, I would say take a hold of those K Week activities because you do get a group of other students who probably don't know anyone also, so you can meet up with one of them, and you never know, they might still be your friend by the end of your senior year. I am still best friends with one of the students that I met in my K Team that first week."

Building relationships – that is the purpose of K Week.

President Capilouto also offers wisdom when it comes to students building relationships and broadening surroundings at the university. At nights, he likes to walk the campus to see students out and about, joining in community with one another.

"I think it's gratifying when people are just getting to know each other and meeting those that are different than themselves," President Capilouto said. "I always try to tell people to find somebody different than you: grew up in a different place, different culture, color, language – sit down and have a conversation."

K Week is ardently planned each and every year. It takes input from numerous students, faculty and staff to create this unforgettable week. The 2016 K Week coordinators, Trent Patrick and Pete Comparoni, worked the past year planning this upcoming nine-day extravaganza for the class of 2020. For these two young men, K Week holds a special place in their hearts, and they want each incoming freshman to share in their passion for UK.

"I had toured UK maybe once, and so K Week — as a new, incoming student — that was everything," said Patrick. "If it weren't for K Week, I wouldn't know where I would be."

Both coordinators were so positively impacted by their K Week experiences, they got involved the following year as K Crew leaders, Super Crew leaders and they now oversee the entire entity.

"I would say one vision I have for K Week 2016 would be to leave new students and the K Crew with a lasting experience," Comparoni said. "We want to make sure that each student has a valuable experience."

For the class on 2020, K Week is more than just a week filled with free food, T-shirts and activities. K Week allows new Wildcats to branch out, build new friendships and broaden their surroundings while taking in all the University of Kentucky has to offer. K Week kicks off each and every student's Kentucky story.

For more information about K Week and to access a schedule of events, visit www.uky.edu/KWeek. For events directed toward diversity and inclusion, visit http://www.uky.edu/diversity/events.

Students can hear more advice from President Capilouto, Randall Cobb, current students and recent UK graduates about kicking off their Kentucky stories by visiting here or by watching the YouTube video above.

UK is the University for Kentucky. At UK, we are educating more students, treating more patients with complex illnesses and conducting more research and service than at any time in our 150-year history. To read more about the UK story and how you can support continued investment in your university and the Commonwealth, go to: uky.edu/uk4ky. #uk4ky #seeblue

MEDIA CONTACT: Katy Bennett or Rebecca Stratton, katy.bennett@uky.edu or rebecca.stratton@uky.edu, 859-257-1909/859-323-2395