St. John’s Welcomes Future Johnnies at Accepted Student Day

April 18, 2024

Buffeting winds and plummeting temperatures helped fuel the buoyant energy of more than 1,600 high school seniors, transfer students, graduate candidates, and their families, who turned out for the widely popular Accepted Student Day on the Queens, NY, campus of St. John’s University.

The annual event, held on Saturday, April 13, allowed future and potential Johnnies of the incoming class of 2024 to peruse academic and service opportunities, technological advances, athletics, and state-of-the-art learning facilities, including the nearly completed St. Vincent Health Sciences Center

Many attendees could see firsthand the progress made on the $105-million, innovative structure, on the University’s expansive Great Lawn, located in the heart of the campus. The center will be home to the University’s thriving Bachelor of Science in Nursing program, and other existing and future health sciences programs, and is expected to open to students and classes by the fall semester. 

“Health sciences is a huge part of St. John’s, and this building is our stake in the ground about how important that is for our future,” Rev. Brian J. Shanley, O.P., University President, said as he gestured toward the building while standing before the campus visitors on a stage erected nearby the construction site. Fr. Shanley delivered welcoming remarks to the crowd during a pause in a pep rally hosted on the Great Lawn and serves as the traditional kick-off for Accepted Student Day. 

“You come to St. John’s at a really exciting time for our University,” the president continued as he referred to two other future buildings that are in the works: a student recreation center and a practice facility for the institution’s basketball teams.

“But the most important thing about St. John’s is not the buildings,” he stressed. “It’s the people at St. John’s— the professors, administrators, staff, and you and your potential fellow classmates—who make St. John’s what it is.”  

Fr. Shanley additionally introduced visitors to the essential core of St. John’s. “We are a first-generation University of opportunity. We change students’ lives. That is the strength of our commitment to your student success.”

Simon G. Møller, Ph.D., Provost, Vice President for Academic Affairs, University Distinguished Professor, and Provost Endowed Chair, noted, “Accepted Student Day is one of my favorite days of the year. Students discover that our focus is always on them and their personal and professional growth and success.”

Before the two leaders’ remarks, the pep rally showcased performances by the St. John’s Pep Band, Dance Team, Kickline Team, and Cheerleading Team.

DJ Zeke, also known as Ezekiel O. Akinyemi ’08TCB, owner of DJ Zeke Entertainment, galvanized pep rally attendees with his banter and disc jockeying prowess as he encouraged his audience to step up for St. John’s giveaways that performing students tossed from the stage. The crowd happily roared back its approval when he shouted, “If St. John’s is the place to be, everybody say, ‘Yeah!’”

Meanwhile, numerous students queued up inside Carnesecca Arena to formalize their commitment to the University by registering for the Fall 2024 semester.

Among those who registered was Matilda Capuano, a high school senior from Great Kill, Staten Island, NY. “St. John’s is the perfect place for me, and this is my fourth visit to the University,” said Matilda, who wants to major in Legal Studies. Matilda was accompanied by her mother, Megan Spoto Capuano ’93SVC.  

“We are so proud that Matilda wants to go to St. John’s,” said Ms. Capuano, who met her husband, Dominick Capuano ’94SVC, when they were both undergraduates at the University. “The first time we visited St. John’s, on a whim, was when Matilda was a junior in high school, and she loved it, right away. And each time we have come to campus since then, there is something new to see and learn.” 

Nearby, Evan Hoffman, a senior at Germantown Central High School in Germantown, NY, said he was considering a major in nursing or biology at St. John’s, and was interested in exploring the offerings at the new health sciences center. “I was also impressed with the big, warm welcome I got when I walked on campus,” he added, referring to the heartfelt cheers and applause he and other attendees received from St. John’s Student Ambassadors as he walked into Carnesecca Arena. Current St. John’s students were also stationed at various entrances to the campus, holding aloft large, red-and-white signs to passing motorists that read, “Get Ready to Rock the Red at St. John’s University!”

For the second consecutive year, organizers of Accepted Student Day included students who will enroll in the University’s graduate programs. University officials said they wanted these students, like their undergraduate counterparts, to experience the unique sense of camaraderie permeating the event.

The Battle of the Orgs was also hosted for the second time for visiting families to enjoy and cast their votes for student performances by members of St. John’s numerous arts organizations.

Throughout the day, prospective students met with deans, faculty, and future peers to learn more about academic opportunities and the advantages of attending St. John’s. Visiting students also took tours of the campus and residence life, information sessions about the University’s Study Abroad program, admission information for transfer students, and a fair that highlighted student services and student organizations.

“We are so incredibly grateful to the many students and families who attended Accepted Student Day. At St. John’s, our focus is on our students and their success academically, professionally, and personally,” said Samantha R. Wright, Chief Enrollment Officer for St. John’s.

“We know that the next few years will open many doors to our future Johnnies, and today was an important step in connecting with their future peers, meeting our incredible faculty, and networking with the many members of the St. John’s community who will support them in their St. John’s journey.”

Accepted Student Day 2024 from St. John's University on Vimeo.