Opening Week begins Sunday, Aug. 11, at Missouri University of Science and Technology. The university will welcome new students to Rolla on Sunday for move-in day.

Students will participate in a week of activities geared to help them transition to university life. A variety of academic workshops will be offered throughout the week, including problem-solving, laboratory safety, mathematics review, communications and leadership.

The workshops give first-year students practical classroom and laboratory experience before the semester officially starts Monday, Aug. 19. Students will also eat lunch with faculty members, which gives both parties an opportunity to discuss classroom expectations in a casual atmosphere. Opening Week will also provide plenty of opportunities for students to make new friends during picnics, barbecues and recreation activities.

Differing from previous years, Miner Values workshops will be held instead of a large-scale convocation for the new students. These Miner Values workshops will be small-group discussions focusing on diversity and inclusion. 

The workshops will finish with a keynote speech to the freshman class by Odell Bizzell, a speaker, author and entrepreneur who has partnered with over 200 colleges and youth organizations, whose interactive presentation will focus on the intersection of leadership and diversity and how to become more effective leaders in a diverse world. 

A traditional activity during Opening Week is the Project X team design competition. Students are divided into 15- to 18-member teams led by student mentors. The teams spend the week designing and building remote-controlled vehicles for the competition. 

On Friday, Aug. 16, members of the campus cheer on their favorite teams as Project X vehicles navigate obstacle courses throughout campus during the competition, which runs 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Races begin at the Puck in the middle of campus and end at the Havener Center.

The vehicles will be auctioned off throughout the week and during an awards ceremony at 9:30 p.m. that Friday evening in the Havener Center atrium. Proceeds will go to the Spirit of Change movement at Missouri S&T. Funds are used to help make a difference in students’ lives. Previous acts of the Spirit of Change include parking meters paid for a day, juice and homemade cupcakes after a math exam, free cups of coffee served at the Burns & McDonnell Student Success Center, or a cup of hot chocolate on a chilly day. In the past, the money helped students whose apartment burned and helped a student who was in a car accident. 

A complete schedule of Opening Week activities is available online at pro.mst.edu.