Pennsylvania Western University will kick off the fall semester with a full slate of activities for students and families during Welcome Weekend 2022, Aug. 18-21.

The four-day celebration will feature new events and annual favorites – including California’s traditional candle-lighting ceremony, Clarion’s WINGO and Edinboro’s Boro Bash.

“Welcome Weekend is the perfect opportunity to commemorate our new beginning as PennWest University, and we’re thrilled to do so in a way that embraces the history and traditions of all three campuses,” said Melissa Dunn, director of student development and Welcome Weekend lead. “There is always a special energy and excitement in the air as our students return home to campus, but this year, we have even more to celebrate.”

First-year and transfer students will move into residence halls at the California, Clarion and Edinboro campuses between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 18. Scores of faculty, staff and student volunteers will be on hand to direct traffic, greet students and their families, and help carry belongings to students’ rooms.

Welcome Weekend continues through Sunday, with lots of opportunities to get acquainted, learn the campus and enjoy the countdown to the start of classes on Monday. Highlights include PlayFair team-building activities, Academic Convocation and fireworks on each campus.

“For many students, this is the first time they will be living away from home,” Dunn said. “Our goal is to make the transition as smooth as possible by providing ample opportunities for students to make social connections, explore available resources and get acclimated to life on campus.”

Returning students will move in to campus housing between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 20.

Simultaneous PennWest flag-raising ceremonies featuring short remarks by students and administrators will take place on the California, Clarion and Edinboro campuses at 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

An outdoor fair for clubs and organizations will follow from 1 to 3 p.m.

“PennWest is a place of boundless opportunities for our students,” said Founding President Dr. Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson. “We are Vulcans, Golden Eagles and Fighting Scots. The flag-raising ceremony symbolizes that, together, we are a part of something even greater.”

Fall semester classes begin Monday, Aug. 22.

For a complete schedule of Welcome Weekend events, visit