Quest Assistants prepare for Class of 2018


President Penelope W. Kyle, right, with members of the Quest Assistant staff near Preston Hall.

Radford University President Penelope W. Kyle helped rally some of the school's top student leaders June 6 at a luncheon in honor of the Quest Assistants (QAs), which she hosts annually.

Two dozen QAs gathered with the Quest administrative staff in the Board Room in Martin Hall in preparation for and celebration of the arrival of the RU Class of 2018.

Now in its 35th year, Quest is the university's orientation program for incoming freshmen and transfer students. Quest Assistants guide students and their parents through living and dining arrangements, provide opportunities for students to interact and engage, and share knowledge on how to thrive and succeed academically.

"I am delighted that you have given up a large portion of your summer for this important orientation program, because it is critical for the future of RU," President Kyle told the students. The president reminded the QAs of the important role they serve in acclimating the incoming students, as well as assuring their parents and families.

President Kyle also cited the multiple construction projects and architectural accomplishments on campus the QAs can help "show off" during orientation.

"You all can give them the vision of what's going to be there," she said.

From RU's first-ever, soon-to-be-completed Student Fitness and Wellness Center, to the Center for the Sciences under construction, to future construction of the new College of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences building – the largest academic building on campus -  and the ongoing renovation of residence halls "you have just got such a good story to tell," President Kyle continued.

Composed of upperclassmen, QAs have to meet certain GPA qualifications and must be in good disciplinary standing with the university. They go through a rigorous interview process and start training for the job during the spring semester prior to their summer service.


President Penelope W. Kyle with members of this year's Quest staff as they prepare for the summer sessions of New Student Orientation.

Sophomore Sidney Green of Aldie, Virginia, said she remembers going through the Quest program as a nervous but excited freshman. Those expected jitters quickly faded with help from a person whose position Green, an English major, now fills.

"My QA was so helpful and positive about her experience here," Green said.

Junior Kaelin Cundiff of Chesapeake, Virginia, is looking forward to spending the summer in Radford, "an awesome, supportive community," she said.

"At RU, I don't feel overwhelmed. I feel at home," she said.

Quest is just one of many opportunities Cundiff, who is double majoring in marketing and finance, said the university has opened her eyes to.

President Kyle closed her remarks to the QAs with a reminder that their summer plans are not only vital to the university, its reputation and its incoming freshmen class; Quest is also an opportunity to prepare for future endeavors.

"This is a great opportunity for you to prepare yourself for your careers," President Kyle said.

"Because what you are doing this summer will help you in interviewing skills and it will help you on the job. You will learn a lot and you'll be much better prepared for what comes next after graduation."

Orientation kicks off June 16 with the first of five Transfer Quest sessions, designed for students transferring to the university. Classes for the fall 2014 semester are scheduled to begin Aug. 25.

Orientation Programs 2014


  • June 23-24
  • June 26-27
  • June 30 and July 1
  • July 8-9

Quest Express

  • July 2
  • July 3
  • July 10

Transfer Quest

  • June 16
  • June 17
  • June 19
  • June 20
  • July 11

Jun 11, 2014