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Letters to the University Community Cougar First Impressions

August 19, 2008

“You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” It’s a cliché that we’ve probably all heard and one that I believe is absolutely accurate. First impressions really do matter, and images and thoughts from initial encounters can last forever.

This fall, the University of Houston will welcome thousands of new and returning students to the UH campus. I personally invite you to join me and many other volunteers from the Cougar community on August 25 - 26, 2008, as we take part in what has become a valued UH tradition—Cougar First Impressions (CFI).

Currently, in its 11th year of existence, CFI is a Staff Council sponsored event that is held each year during the first two days of the Fall semester. Participating volunteers are positioned at 19 various campus locations and work in two-hour shifts from 7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. In addition to offering a warm welcome, staff members distribute bottled water, ice cream, tons of give-ways and also provide directions and valuable information that helps students familiarize themselves with the UH campus.

Cougar First Impressions is truly a great opportunity for us all to demonstrate just how much the University of Houston community cares about its students and how excited we are about their arrival. I know firsthand how gracious and welcoming this campus can be—having experienced your open arms and kind hearts throughout my first year as chancellor and president of the University of Houston.

I believe ensuring student success and delivering quality customer service are key components to becoming a Tier One university—so I encourage you to show your Cougar pride, as well as your commitment to this university and its students by signing up as a volunteer for the 11th Annual Cougar First Impressions.

CFI depends heavily on volunteers and is funded totally by donations. Last year proved to be an amazing success with more than 450 volunteers participating in the two-day event. Over 25,000 student questions were answered, more than 40,000 drinks were handed out and students received countless brochures, campus maps, pens, pencils and notepads. This year’s Cougar First Impressions promises to be even bigger and better—so please make your plans to volunteer soon because, together, we will undoubtedly show thousands of our students why it’s so cool to be a Cougar.


To sign up as a volunteer or for more information on Cougar First Impressions, visit the CFI website