Dr. James Johnson visits ECU to discuss Changing Demographics in Higher Education
March 27, 2015
1220 Jenkins Fine Arts Center
Each fall, we have more than 5,500 new first-year and transfer students entering East Carolina University. Our students come from more diverse cultures, backgrounds and life experiences than ever before. Indeed, one of the few constants in higher education is change. And how our campus adapts and grows with our students can significantly impact their path to student success.
ECU’s Polar Bear Plunge started nearly 20 years ago with just 35 jumpers hitting the water, but has grown over the years to more than 1,100 jumpers and is now a campus-wide tradition. Some students jumped the first year and vowed to come back each year until they graduate.
Erica Lee made that same vow as a freshman in 2009 and has stuck to her word.
“The first year I jumped by myself, though my suitemates did come out and support me,” she said. “It was so much fun that I was able to corral my friends to jump with me in year two.”
Erica said the Polar Bear Plunge was so much more than just a fun thing to do though. The Sanford, NC native said college was such a change of pace for her and she wanted to do the best she could to immerse herself into a campus tradition and culture.
“I was super nervous before the jump, partly because I couldn’t swim and partly because I didn’t know what to expect. But, I loved every second of it and I felt rejuvenated afterward.”
That rejuvenation carried forward into the classroom too. Erica completed her bachelor’s degree and then decided to stay at ECU while she pursues two master’s degrees. Erica will graduate in December 2015 with an MBA from the College of Business and a MS in Exercise and Sport Science from the College of Health and Human Performance. Her jump streak was in jeopardy in 2014 when Erica’s night class was at the same time as Polar Bear Plunge. But her professor wasn’t about to let that happen and excused Erica for part of class so that she could head to the Student Rec Center and make the jump.
“I was so happy he let me keep my own tradition alive. My friends make fun of me because I still have all six Polar Bear t-shirts. In fact, I have a kept every t-shirt I ever received at ECU. I love them all.”
Once she graduates, Erica wants to work for the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets and later become an owner or general manager of a pro sports team. She said she’s not afraid of any of life’s challenges in front of her.
“Sometimes, you just have to take the plunge and see what happens.”
Nominations for East Carolina University's
Inaugural 40 Under 40 Awards
Nominations are now open until February 7, 2015. Please consider asking fellow ECU alumni, employers, or community leaders to nominate deserving ECU Pirate graduates for this award.
Click here for the nomination form.
Honoree Eligibility and Selection Criteria:
Important Dates to Remember:
For additional information, please contact the Office of Student Affairs Development at (252) 737-4970.
What is Norovirus?? Stay Healthy
Norovirus is beginning to emerge on college campuses, including ECU in recent weeks.
Ever had nausea, vomiting, and/or diarrhea that came on you quick and ran through you like a mack truck? Then you have probably experienced a “stomach bug” or “stomach flu” or maybe even thought you had “food poisoning”–all these phrases usually point to a the true culprit, Norovirus.
ECU New Code of Conduct Process
Effective January 1, 2015, there will be a new ECU Student Code of Conduct process for handling student violations to the Code. The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities invites you to please watch this short video about the new processes ensuring that you are in the know of your rights as well as the options. You may click on the image or HERE to view the video.
Campus Dining - New Website and Mobile App
ECU Campus Dining Services has gone through some technological upgrades this semester. A new website went live in February with new features and options for students including dining locations, meal plans, healthy eating and catering. The website can still be found at www.ecu.edu/dining.