February orientation volunteers greet arriving “Febs” at the Axinn Welcome Center.

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. — With fresh snow blanketing the campus, the College welcomed 101 new undergraduates to campus this week to begin their academic careers at Middlebury. Affectionately referred to as “Febs,” these students start and conclude their Middlebury careers mid-year. The new group arrived today at the Axinn Center, where they began a busy schedule of meetings, campus tours, a student services fair, convocation, and a square dance.

The mid-year class represents 31 states, four foreign countries, and the District of Columbia. The students are part of the cohort that applied and were accepted to the class of 2019, but, for various reasons, matriculated in February rather than September.

The accomplished group, many of whom took a “Febmester” to work, travel, or study, includes 46 captains of varsity sports teams, 11 editors of school publications, and nine class presidents. Among the group, the most popular majors are international and global studies, biology, and environmental studies.

The Febs were greeted in Axinn Center by “point five” orientation leaders.

On day two of the rigorous orientation schedule, the new Febs will be introduced to academic life at Middlebury, meeting their advisors and launching into their first-year seminar classes.

Over the following three days, they will be steeped in the ways of academic and student life, learning about the Honor Code, academic advising, residential life, recreational opportunities, and campus safety, among other topics. On Friday night, they’ll have their first opportunity to cheer on Panther athletes at the women’s basketball and men’s hockey games. On Saturday the group will head up the mountain to Rikert Nordic Center and the Snow Bowl for an afternoon of winter fun. The evening ends with the traditional torchlight parade at the Snow Bowl, followed by a dance at Kirk Alumni Center.

Classes for the spring semester begin for all students on Monday, February 15.

Reporting by Stephen Diehl; photography by Robert Keren