As UND ushers in a new wave of incoming students, the Hansons are continuing their family legacy


Kate Menzies

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As UND ushers in a new wave of incoming students, the Hansons are continuing their family legacy

Photos by Jackie Lorentz

Erik Hanson, a Grand Forks native and recent Red River High School graduate, always knew he wanted to come to the University of North Dakota.

The Hanson family's ties to the University made his college selection an easy choice. His parents and his sister all proudly wear UND green: his mother is a nursing grad, his father is a law grad, and his sister is currently pre-med.

As part of Summer Orientation, incoming students are able to come to UND and learn about what life will be like once they arrive. Students are given the chance to get acclimated to campus and learn about services and facilities available to them.

Erik was able to take part in a Summer Orientation session Wednesday, June 11, with the College of Business & Public Administration. Erik hopes to follow in his father's footsteps by attending law school, and he knows that UND's undergraduate programs in the College of Business & Public Administration are a great stepping stone to get there.

"I wanted to go to a school that had a really strong accounting program and a really strong entrepreneurship program, rather than a school with just one strong program," said Erik.

Luckily for Erik, UND entrepreneurship continues to grow in both numbers and prestige. In fact, the State Board of Higher Education recently approved the establishment of the UND School of Entrepreneurship, elevating the successful program from department status.

With his mom and his dad by his side, the Hansons joined numerous other families anxiously awaiting the day's events. Summer Orientation kicked off with a welcome session that inspired students to get involved with campus and get excited about becoming a part of the family of over 102,145 living alumni who have attended UND.

Following the presentation, students were able to explore the campus resource fair. Erik, who was involved with basketball and baseball in high school, was particularly excited to learn more about intramural sports. He was also eager to learn about NoDak Nation, an organization on campus that encourages student attendance at sporting events. He plans on attending as many games as possible.

"I'm so excited to become a part of UND's student section. Every time I've gone to a game, the atmosphere is crazy," said Erik.

He was also interested in the Greek organizations on campus. His mother, father and sister all pledged. His father, a Kappa Sigma, said he hopes Erik will continue his legacy there, but will be happy regardless of what fraternity he chooses.

"The resource fair was a great opportunity for me to see what clubs and organizations I can get involved with on campus," said Erik.

After the resource fair, students and families had the opportunity to eat at the Terrace Dining Center for lunch. "The food was really good," said Erik, who enjoyed getting to see what dining options are available on campus.

With a full stomach in tow, Erik met with an advisor to plan out what classes he should take his first semester. For Erik, this was the most exciting part of orientation.

"It's nice that in college I can take classes that are driven towards what I want to do," said Erik.

After mapping out his schedule, Erik listened to various presentations on how students can "be exceptional" at UND. As a person who was involved in numerous extracurricular activities, this presentation hit home.

"It was great that they stressed how getting involved will make the college experience so much better," said Erik.

Following the presentations, students were given the opportunity to ask questions to current students about their experiences at UND for a more personal aspect of orientation. As the day came to a close, students and families took a tour of campus and absorbed all that UND has to offer.

Even though Erik won't be far from home, he is excited to begin this new chapter of his life.

"I'm looking forward to the independence college has to offer," said Erik.

All in all, UND left a great first impression on him.

"The Orientation session was helpful in preparing me for what's to come and helped me get my start at UND," said Erik.

Kate Menzies University & Public Affairs student writer

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