First steps on the road to graduation

Orientation photos, videos, and more

Orientation for the Gettysburg College Class of 2017 was jam-packed with programs and traditions designed to help members of the class get to know each other and campus, and launch them into their lives and careers as Gettysburgians.

Complete Orientation coverage – photos, videos, speeches, and more

The First Year Walk is one such tradition. Now in its 11th year, the walk includes Gettysburg College faculty, staff, and students recreating the 1863 walk to hear the Gettysburg Address. This year’s walk occurred less than three months before the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address.


View photos on Flickr.

In 1863, Gettysburg College students walked with President Lincoln to the newly opened Gettysburg National Cemetery, where Lincoln delivered one of the most well known speeches in history. It was an 1851 graduate of the College, David Wills, who invited Lincoln to deliver "a few appropriate remarks" at the cemetery’s dedication. Wills hosted the president in his home the night before the address.

Upon arrival at the National Cemetery, this year’s speaker, Susan Eisenhower, chair emeritus of Gettysburg College’s Eisenhower Institute and granddaughter of the former president, delivered a reading of the address. Eisenhower emphasized the town’s historical importance – from the decisive Civil War battle to Lincoln’s immortal address to the time her grandfather spent in town.

Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College is a highly selective four-year residential college of liberal arts and sciences with a strong academic tradition that includes Rhodes Scholars, a Nobel laureate and other distinguished scholars among its alumni. The college enrolls 2,600 undergraduate students and is located on a 200-acre campus adjacent to the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania.

Contact: Nikki Rhoads, senior assistant director of communications, 717.337.6803

Posted: Mon, 26 Aug 2013

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