First Wave Prepares First-Year Incoming Students for Fall Semester

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – Preparing first-year students for success and engagement by forming connections with fellow students, faculty, and staff is the core mission of First Wave at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi.

The extended orientation program, which took place on Aug. 20, featured information on classes in the First-Year Learning Communities Program (FYLCP), along with information about the wide variety of services the Island University offers. More than 1,500 students attended First Wave and up to 200 faculty, staff members, and student volunteers provided support for the event.

“We know that our students’ sense of belonging at their college plays a major role in their success and whether they will be retained into their second year,” said Dr. Rita Sperry, TAMU-CC Interim Chair, Department of Interdisciplinary Studies and FYLCP Coordinator. “My personal goal is that students make friendships at First Wave that they’ll keep throughout their first semester and beyond, and that go into the first week of classes with confidence.”

For some first-year students, First Wave was a chance to revel in the realization of a long-term goal. Computer Science major Abrielle Jackson says she knew she wanted to attend TAMU-CC after receiving a flyer in the fourth grade back home in Tyler. The beautiful unique scenery of the Island campus stayed with Jackson through the years and served as inspiration to apply and become an Islander.

“I hope to become engrained in campus life and in my academics, do the best job I can do,” said Jackson. “Thanks to First Wave, I feel more comfortable, and I now have the confidence to jump into college and take on my future educational endeavors.”

Fort Worth native Alicia Tolley said she was thrilled about the academic challenges that awaits her this semester.

"I can’t wait to actually get the feel of a college classroom and see how my personality is going to come out during my time here,” Tolley, who is studying oceanography and environmental science, said.


First Wave made me realize that TAMU-CC is home away from home, and everyone is here to support all of us.

Robert Parmer, first-year biology major

First Wave ended the day with the first-ever Islander Playfair, where students got to bond with their First-Year Seminar classmates through a variety of team-based activities. Participants broke off into small groups based on similarities in their backgrounds that were called out by a host whose lively commentary kept the collective energy level high despite the intense mid-August heat. 

Business Administration major Angel Espindola chose the Island University because it is close to home.

“During my time here, I hope to get the most out of the community that TAMU-CC builds. Also, First Wave allowed me to learn about services that I’ll use to my advantage to finish my degree,” said Espindola.

Freshman biology major Robert Parmer said he appreciated the welcoming Islander embrace from everyone at First Wave.

“As new Islanders, everyone here has been so nice to us,” said Parmer. “First Wave made me realize that TAMU-CC is home away from home, and everyone is here to support all of us.”