UNA president advises incoming students

President Kenneth Kitts meets with faculty and staff in 2014. Kitts advises students to remember “college is a marathon, not a sprint.”

It is my pleasure to welcome you as a new student to the University of North Alabama. You have made a great decision in selecting UNA as your college home, and my hope is that you will be very happy here.

College is fun. Really, it is – and it should be. In fact, most alumni end up looking back at their time in college as being among the best years of their lives. That is not surprising. There are friends to make, games to attend, performances to enjoy and clubs to join. You can travel to an exotic place or indulge a hobby or interest like never before. It is a time to try new things. When I have the opportunity to speak to incoming students, I always make it a point to say college is not a spectator sport, so get on the field and play!

At UNA, you will enjoy these experiences on one of the most beautiful campuses in the country. And we have lions. I can hear Leo III and Una as I write this welcome. What other university president has such interesting (and furry) neighbors?

College is so much fun that it’s easy to forget that the experience revolves around your education: The transmittal and acquisition of knowledge through teaching. Our faculty will teach you well. Our staff will enhance your learning experience in ways large and small. But you must be prepared to do your part. Even in the fast-paced, technology-heavy world in which we live, that still reduces to the same simple equation presenting itself to generations of students before you: Time plus effort equals success. You have to study a lot. You will also want to pace yourself. Remind yourself college is a marathon, not a sprint.

The good news is you are enrolling at an institution that will return your investment many times over. So come to class prepared, throw yourself into your studies and do not be afraid to ask questions. Get to know your professors and use the many resources that we offer to help you succeed. If you do these things, you will have an extraordinary experience at this extraordinary place. You’ll also graduate on time and join the long line of proud UNA alumni who are leading full lives, experiencing career success and leaving a mark in their chosen professions.

Your UNA journey begins today, so make it count. We’re glad you’re here. Roar Lions!