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Top five things you need to know for this week: Aug. 28 edition

First Friday Parade to be held this week
The annual First Friday Parade will be held this Friday, Sept. 1 and will start at 6 p.m.
The route for the parade will go along Highway 93, beginning at the intersection of Cherry Rd. and ending at the intersection of Williamson Rd.
Traditionally, the First Friday parade is held on the Friday afternoon prior to the first Clemson football home game of the season. The parade has a history going back to 1974.
The parade is being hosted by Central Spirit, and this year’s theme is the Legacy of Champions.
SCDMV offering new Clemson license plates
The South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles (SCDMV) is offering a new Clemson University personalized license plate, the university announced last week.
The plates will feature the tiger paw logo and up to seven letters and numbers to be personalized. Each plate will cost $100 plus the vehicle’s registration every two years.    
The personalized license plate is part of a program Clemson has hosted with the SCDMV since 1991. The program has raised nearly $900,000 for the Alumni association and scholarships since its inception.
To find out more about the license plates, go to http://tinyurl.com/yaxzc2v6.
Clemson welcomes new freshman class
Clemson University welcomed its latest freshman class, the Class of 2021, to campus last week.
The university says more than 3,650 freshmen have enrolled for the 2017-18 academic year. Freshman applications increased 12 percent this year to a total of 26,244. Of those students, approximately 400 are in the Honors College. Honors College applications increased by five percent from the year before.
The university says an additional 1,500 transfer students and 1,450 graduate students are enrolled for this semester.
The university says that these new students hail from all over the U.S. and from countries around the world.
Clemson’s Campus Pride Index score increases
Clemson University’s Campus Pride Index (CPI) score has increased to 3 out of 5 stars, according to a Facebook post made last month by Clemson’s Sexuality and Gender Alliance (SAGA).
Last year, the university received a score of 1.5 out of 5 stars, which ranked it in the bottom 10 of the 276 schools that were reviewed.
The CPI is a “national assessment tool for campuses looking for ways to improve their LGBTQ campus life,” according to campusprideindex.org. The score is factored from a self-assessment completed by a campus official. The assessment includes 50+ questions which correspond to eight different LGBTQ-friendly factors.
To view more information about Clemson’s CPI score, go to http://tinyurl.com/y7tsxfyv.
Clemson trustees cleared in ‘excessive spending’ probe
State officials with the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) found no evidence of “excessive spending” by the Clemson University Board of Trustees after a yearlong audit, the university announced last week.
The S.C. Commission on Higher Education requested the audit following a story published in The Post and Courier last year which found that the board had routinely spent thousands of dollars on meals and entertainment over a five-year period.
According to the final report, the OIG found “no evidence of intentional abuse or wrongdoing. It also noted that while the board followed its own policies, the expenses were “conservatively, ‘generous’ by governmental standards.””
A press release issued by the university last week explained that the trustees were “pleased” with the findings. 
To view the audit report, go to http://tinyurl.com/y9lysgjh.

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