Friday, August 23, 2019 at 11 a.m. in the Student Activities Center
Good morning, everyone! I am honored to welcome you as Indiana University South Bend’s Class of 2023! You and I are starting a journey together as this is my first year here, too. I look forward to sharing this journey with you over the next four years as you progress through your courses and work towards graduation.
The experiences you will have here – in and out of the classroom – will not only prepare you to pursue your passions and realize your dreams but they will prepare you to be a life-long learner. The degree you will receive when you complete your requirements is an Indiana University degree. It is a degree that is recognized and respected in the region, the state, and across the country and around the world. At IU South Bend, we offer learning environments that consists of small classes that allow you to develop connections with our faculty as well as your peers, but most importantly, that allow you to connect to your learning.
Your enrollment with us now means that you are already part of a powerful IU Alumni network that is active and influential in business circles and communities almost everywhere your career path may take you. When you graduate, you will be among alumni that are successful and sought-after because of the high-quality education our IU South Bend programs provide. As we like to say here, we have Hoosier Spirit and Titan Pride!
We have a series of speakers to also welcome you to the university but to also provide you with some words of wisdom and a greater understanding of what it means to be a member of the IU South Bend community.
Ask questions, explore and learn.
This is an exciting time in your life and a time when you will have opportunities to meet new people, have new experiences, and learn new things. Learning is about exploring new ideas, interrogating the evidence, challenging your beliefs, and asking hard questions.
One of my favorite quotes is from Louis Pasteur, the French microbiologist who discovered many things but may be best known for the process of pasteurization. The quote is, “Chance favors the prepared mind.” What you learn here over the next four years will prepare your mind to take advantage of “chances” or opportunities that you encounter in your life. It will allow you to open doors to internships, job opportunities and career choices. But, most of all, it will transform your life and the lives of those around you.
Learning also takes time and dedication. If you are taking a full load of courses, plan to spend 25-30 extra hours each week reading, preparing for class, and completing assignments. Also, be sure to take advantage of opportunities to visit your faculty members during office hours, meet regularly with your advisor, or seek extra help with tutoring or writing in the writing center. Spending this much time on your classes can be a challenge, especially as you are learning the ropes of being a college student and living on your own for the first time.
And, it is OK if you experience some bumps in the road along your journey. Everyone experiences a setback now and then, but we are confident you can overcome any challenge and we are here to help. You matter to us, we know you are here on purpose (whether you know yet or not!), and you belong here as a vital member of the Titan family.
This convocation ceremony serves as a formal commemoration of this important milestone in your life. It is one of the most significant days of your life, so remember it as you progress through your studies. Listen closely to the words of those who will follow me and take them to heart.
I look forward to seeing you all at the all campus lunch later today but more importantly I look forward to congratulating you at commencement when you walk across the stage. For this class, it will also mean that you and I have journeyed there together!