Mission & Program Objectives

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Circle of students

The mission of the Dawg Days Freshman Retreat is to help students build lasting connections to peers and the Heartland region by sharing with them the spirit and traditions of Southern Illinois University. 

Program Objectives:

  • Share spirit and traditions of Southern Illinois University
  • Develop peer network and support system prior to coming on to campus for collegiate experience
  • Foster a sense of connection with the surrounding natural areas of Southern Illinois
  • Introduce students to SIU's Touch of Nature Environmental Center

We believe our program makes a difference. Research in the field of Extended Orientation suggests that students who participate in programs like Dawg Days are more likely to graduate in a timely manner, retain to graduation at their original institution of choice, and even do better academically. We truly believe that students who participate in our program will become more connected to the spirit and traditions of SIU, will develop a strong sense of community, and build lifelong connections to support them through their academic career at SIU.