A hundred reasons to be a Miami Hurricane

College isn’t always about going to class and squeezing in some parties in between. Students spend hours in athletic practices, meetings, rehearsals, deadlines, jobs and a multitude of other things.

Each Friday, The Hurricane will run “Behind the Scenes,” a series spotlighting student groups and organizations that make the University a more dynamic place.

Student ambassadors of the President’s 100 (P100) are often seen giving tours of the campus, pointing out buildings and answering prospective students’ questions-all while walking backwards.

But there’s more to it than good balance.

“We are the faces of UM for prospective students,” Wendy-Ann Dixon, member of P100 advisory board, said.

P100 members, while giving one of the three tours throughout campus that are scheduled daily, provide a personal interaction to high school and transfer students who are considering making UM their undergraduate home. They can relate to students and their parents on a level that the admissions officers cannot because they are active in actual campus life.

“They are enthusiastic and seem like they really love the campus,” Lynn Fayad, freshman, said.

However, the impressions that P100 members leave with the students on their tours is one that goes both ways. Senior and two-year P100 member Reginald Saint-Hilaire credits his tours as not only beneficial to the prospective students that trail behind him but also as self-fulfilling endeavors that reinforce his decision to attend UM.

“Doing P100 has given me more pride and love for the school,” Saint-Hilaire said. “The best thing about it is communicating why I’m happy to be here.”

Now in its 25th anniversary, P100 continues to enhance the reputation of the university as well as its own.

“The name P100 is like ‘ooh, I want to be a part of it,'” Namona Lewin, sophomore, said.

In order to be a part of P100 students, must submit an application either online or through the office of admissions. Once applications are reviewed, students are asked to give a brief presentation and those who are selected from this group are then interviewed. Those who are accepted serve as a new pair of lenses though which high school juniors and seniors view UM.

“I just love the fact that when new people come you’re their only sight into UM,” Saint-Hilaire said.

Members are asked to be available to tour at least once every other week in the Fall and once a week in the Spring.

But P100 members are not all work and no play. Among the benefits of this voluntary position is the advantage of being first to register for classes. Additionally, at the end of the year, the two members who have the most points, which depends on the number of tours given, accompany an admissions officer to a high school college fair. Last year’s winners traveled to Boston and Washington D.C.

P100 ambassadors conduct tours three times a day Monday through Friday at 11 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. and once on Saturdays at 10:30 a.m. Tours usually depart from the office of admissions in the Ashe building.

“You don’t have to know everything, you just have to be prepared to learn and willing to learn,” Dixon said.

P100 is currently accepting applications for membership. Applications can be submitted either online at miami.edu/p100 or through the office of admissions by 5 p.m. Oct. 7.

Angela Sturrup can be contacted at a.sturrup@umiami.edu.