Our View: Student influx invigorates our community
Today, about 3,000 freshmen will begin moving into Appalachian State University residence halls. Not far behind them, upperclassmen residing on campus will begin to flood the campus on Saturday. Add in about 1,150 new transfer students, and by the time classes begin on Tuesday there will be about 4,000 new undergraduates -- in addition to almost 12,000 undergraduates already enrolled.
An addition of 16,000 people means that Boone's population effectively doubles by early next week, and for those of us who live here year around, that's something to look forward to.
Yes, it means that traffic gets a bit more hectic, but it also means that there will be an excitement and immediacy in the air that, coupled with the economic vitality students bring to the High Country, serve to stimulate our community.
Boone and ASU have been intertwined for so long that one without the other is inconceivable, and as the university gears up for the first day of classes after a summer break, we say simply to those who are arriving: Welcome back.