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Welcome Weekend to usher in largest group of new students in years

August 15, 2023

Northwood University is preparing to welcome its largest group of new students in several years.

“While many colleges are experiencing a decline in enrollment, Northwood’s incoming new student enrollment has increased over 23 percent,” stated Northwood President Kent MacDonald. “Many factors contribute to our enrollment success, including our unabashed commitment to developing graduates who believe in free enterprise, limited government, the rule of law, and personal responsibility.”

Collectively, these traits are known as The Northwood Idea. 

“I am grateful to our trustees, staff, and faculty for their leadership and passion for The Northwood Idea,” MacDonald added. “We must also acknowledge hundreds of high school teachers, counselors, community leaders, and parents who helped make it possible for Northwood to welcome our largest incoming freshmen class in several years.”

MacDonald noted these newest Midland residents are a group of exceptional civic- and business-minded young adults who will further the private business school’s mission of developing free enterprise leaders who drive economic and social progress.

The public is invited to help welcome Northwood students to Midland during a Go MAD March from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 25, in downtown Midland.

“Go MAD is a phrase coined by the late Coach Pat Riepma, who inspired thousands of people before he became sick with cancer and ultimately passed away in 2015,” explained Dean of Student Affairs Andy Cripe. “While Pat is no longer with us, his mantra of ‘Go MAD’— Go Make a Difference — lives on.”

Cripe explained the goal of Friday’s march is to continue building relationships between Northwood and the greater Midland community and educate students and families about all the offerings in downtown Midland.

To achieve that, the university works with downtown businesses to create passbooks that students will get stamped at participating locations. Northwood Student Life will provide prizes.

Friday’s event will also include remarks by Midland Mayor Maureen Donker. The community is invited to gather with students and parents at 6:30 p.m. Friday on the lawn behind The H Hotel in downtown Midland. 

Friday marks Move-In Day at Northwood and the kick-off to this year’s Welcome Weekend, including a special Opening Convocation ceremony for our incoming freshmen on Saturday morning.

Northwood is offering residents free yard signs welcoming all our Timberwolves back to Midland. If you’d like a sign welcoming Northwood students to Midland, visit

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