Congratulations, new Bearcats!

You’ve already made perhaps the most stressful decision you’ve faced in your life so far, having chosen to attend Binghamton University. Whether it was your reach or your safety, your first choice or your last, or you’re here because it’s cheaper than Syracuse, you have arrived at BU at exactly the right time.

For starters, the class of 2018 marks the beginning of an unprecedented period of expansion for BU. University President Harvey Stenger unveiled a plan last year that will add 1,000 undergraduates and 3,000 grad students, culminating in a Binghamton University student population of 20,000 by the year 2020.

Most of the construction that has plagued campus for the past few years has been completed, which means that you’re not only avoiding the inconvenience the previous classes suffered, you’re also just in time to use those brand new facilities. You have the Marketplace, some brand new dorms and the swanky new CCPD (Center for Career and Professional Development) space. There is also a pharmacy school coming, opening even more opportunities.

It’s not just campus either. Downtown Binghamton looks vastly different from how it did a few years ago. Rental companies are buying up space Downtown and have completely transformed the landscape of the city, creating brand new student housing in the process. When the time comes for you to start thinking about moving off campus, there will be a wide variety of options laid out in front of you.

Our sports programs are also improving. Between a baseball program that has appeared in the NCAA tournament three times in the past six years, a women’s lacrosse team that won more games in the first half of the season than it had in any prior season, a men’s tennis squad that won seven consecutive conference titles and a men’s basketball team in the process of transformation under head coach Tommy Dempsey, and whose incoming class has an average height of 6’ 7”, all 21 teams are looking better.

With national college costs on the rise, more students than ever are making the decision to apply to state colleges. Binghamton University is no exception to this trend, with the University receiving a record number of more than 27,000 applications for fall 2013. As one of those selected for admission in fall 2014, you join a class of some the most academically successful students this University admissions team has ever assembled. Your classmates at Binghamton will serve as a resource and, regardless of your discipline, you will meet and collaborate with some of the most interesting, intelligent students in New York state. Welcome home.