University of South Alabama, Office of Public Relations
August 15, 2013
Contact: Brittany Otis, USA Public Relations, (251) 460-6211
Contact: Joy Washington, USA Public Relations, (251) 414-8158

USA Kicks Off School Year with a Host of Activities,
Including Opening of a New Residence Hall

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The  University of South Alabama kicks off a new academic year with a host of back-to-school events, including JagFest on Saturday, Aug. 17, which features Move-In Day, a campus fair and president’s dinner buffet.

 The highlight of JagFest this year is the opening of a four-story, 350-room freshman residence hall.  

“We are excited to open our newest addition to the USA residential community,” said Dr. Chris Vinet, director of USA Housing and Residence Life. “Like Stokes Hall, which opened in 2011, our new hall was designed with a focus on academic success. The facility includes a classroom and large study rooms.”

Dr. Nicholas Gossett, assistant professor of Russian in the College of Arts and Sciences, will live in the new facility as the building’s Faculty in Residence.  The Faculty in Residence program was established at USA in 2011 with the opening of Stokes Hall.  Its aim is to increase interaction between faculty and students.  Gossett is the second faculty member to serve in this role.

 In addition to incorporating a Faculty in Residence, the new residence hall includes  Learning Communities, a growing trend in today’s college campus housing.

Learning communities improve student retention and success by integrating academic and campus life.  Five different communities, including business, engineering, health and wellness, leadership, and nursing are featured in the new residence hall. The Learning Community faculty are considered “freshman friendly” and may also teach in the new residence hall classroom.

With the recent addition of the new residence hall, USA will have more than 3,200 students residing on campus this fall. This number includes students living at The Grove, a privately owned student housing complex on USA’s campus.

USA Housing and Residence Life is also pleased to announce the completed renovation of Epsilon one, which now has a new look with modern fixtures and furnishings. The 154-bed residence hall has two-person suites with shared baths.

Classes at USA begin on Monday, Aug. 19.

Upcoming USA back-to-school events include:

  • Saturday, Aug. 17, JagFest (activities all day)

Move-In Day
9 a.m.-4 p.m., USA Residence Halls
USA's Acting President John Smith, deans, faculty, staff, alumni and student organization members welcome and help new students move into the Stokes, Delta, Epsilon, Beta, Gamma and new residence halls, and The Grove student apartments.

Campus Fair
5-6:30 p.m. Mitchell Center Concourse
Features more than 100 information booths set up by USA student organization, business and community representatives. Refreshments are provided and door prizes are given away.

President’s Dinner Buffett
5:30-7 p.m., Mitchell Center Arena
The President's Office sponsors the dinner buffet as a culminating event to JagFest. The event is open to new students and their families, as well as other members of the University community. The dinner held in the USA Mitchell Center is for all new students and their parents. Transfer students are also invited to attend.

  • Thursday, Aug. 15, Kickoff Celebration
6-8 p.m., Tacky Jack’s.
The Jag Gals will host an event at Tacky Jack’s with Head Football Coach Joey Jones, the cheerleaders, and South Paw and Miss Pawla to kick off and preview the upcoming season.  For reservations and more information, contact the Office of Athletic Development at (251) 461-1366.
  • Aug. 21-26 Pan-Hellenic Recruitment Week
Please view detailed schedule at
  • Friday, Aug. 23 Jaguar Soccer
7 p.m., The Cage, South Alabama vs Mississippi State
  • Sunday, Aug. 25, Football Fan Day
4-6 p.m., Main Floor of the Mitchell Center
Come out and meet Head Football Coach Joey Jones and the Jaguar football team for Fan Day 2013. This event will feature an autograph session with the coaches and players.  Fans are encouraged to bring memorabilia to be signed and cameras to take photos of favorite Jaguar players, South Paw, Miss Pawla, and the cheerleaders. This event, which includes parking, is free and open to the public.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 27, National Pan-Hellenic Council Recruitment Event
7 p.m., Shelby Hall. For more information, contact Petre Freeman at (251) 460-6739
  • Wednesday, Aug. 28, USA National Alumni Association Annual Meeting
5:30 p.m., USA Laidlaw Performing Arts Center. For more information, contact the National Alumni Association at (251) 460-7084.
  • Thursday, Aug. 29, Get On Board Day
11a.m.-2 p.m., Mitchell Center Concourse.
This day is an opportunity for all students to meet some of our 200+ student organizations and to get involved on USA's campus.
  • Thursday, Aug. 29,  Jaguar Football

Ladd-Peebles Stadium, First game of the 2013 Season. This game will have an ESPN3 broadcast.
Noon - Tailgating - Ladd-Peebles Stadium (Lott Street gate opens at noon and Virginia Street gate opens at 3 p.m.)
4:10 p.m. – The South Jaguar Prowl - Coaches and players walk south side of Ladd-Peebles Stadium.
6:30 p.m. – Kickoff time- South Alabama Jaguars vs. Southern Utah Thunderbirds

Individual and season South Alabama Jaguar football tickets can be purchased by visiting or by calling (251) 461-1USA.

For more information on registration or readmission for former USA students, visit the USA Registrar’s Office online at or call (251) 460-6251.           

New students interested in applying for admission to the University can get information by visiting the USA Office of Admissions online at or by calling (251) 460-6141.                 


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