Troy, N.Y. – Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and the city of Troy will officially welcome members of the Class of 2018 to campus and also introduce them to the local community today.

The annual Greeting at the Approach will take place from 3:15 to 4:15 p.m. at the 8th Street Approach. Vice President for Student Life Timothy Sams will introduce the new members of the Class of 2018.

As a special highlight of the event, Rensselaer President Shirley Ann Jackson will also greet and shake hands with each member of the Class of 2018. Students will proceed down the steps and head to Riverfront Park.

This year, Rensselaer students will be coming down from The Approach onto 6th Avenue and down Fulton Street, turn onto 3rd Street, then right onto Broadway through Monument Square, then will go right down River Street and finally turn into the entrance of Riverfront Park.

While at Riverfront Park, the first-year students also will be honored at a brief ceremony featuring remarks from members of the Rensselaer campus community and Troy city officials including: President Jackson, Troy Mayor Lou Rosamilia, President of the Union Erin Amarello ’15, Grand Marshal Kyle Keraga ’15, and Resident Student Association President Ricky Manz. 

At 6:30 p.m.,Russell Sage students will join Rensselaer students in Riverfront Park to kick off the annual Welcome Festival. Rensselaer and Sage students also will participate in a scavenger hunt that will create an opportunity for them to meet and interact with downtown Troy businesses.

From 6:30 to 8:45 p.m. Rensselaer students, faculty, staff, and residents of Troy and surrounding communities are invited to attend the annual Welcome Festival, a free communiversity celebration featuring live entertainment, outdoor activities, arts, and crafts.

Of special note this year, the Welcome Festival also will include a twilight Farmer’s Market. The event will take place at the Troy Riverfront Park.

From 9 to 9:30 p.m., the festivities will conclude with fireworks.