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Freshman Convocation

Thursday, September 14, 2017 - 6:00pm

Oviatt Library Lawn

The Freshman Convocation is an annual celebration of learning which is a collaboration of Student and Academic Affairs for the first time freshman class. It connects the concepts of in-classroom and out-of- classroom learning by focusing on the Freshman Common Reading. The Freshman Convocation committee will first seek to have the book's author serve as the keynote speaker.

freshman convocation 2017
As a new freshman, you are invited to read this book and to discuss it as part of a campus-wide community of readers. If you are enrolled in UNIV 100, you will have the opportunity to read Between the World and Me as part of the course. But even if you're not taking UNIV 100, reading and talking about the book will remind you that shared intellectual engagement is at the very center of the academic community that you are about to join.


This year's Freshman Convocation will take place on Thursday, September 14, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. on the Oviatt Library Lawn and the featured keynote speaker will filmmaker, musician, speaker, and activist, Bree Newsome!

The New Student orientation leaders guide the freshman class on a symbolic journey that attempts to unify the class and teach them the campus symbols and rituals. The freshman class is assembled in Matador Square and led down Matador Walk to the Oviatt Library Lawn by a processional of Associate Deans, faculty and student leaders. The campus College Deans and academic executives await the students at the top of the Oviatt Library steps. At the end of the program students ascent the steps which serves as a symbolic gesture of campus learning.

A successful student or alumnus is chosen to provide a brief speech of practical advice; original march music ("March of the Matadors") was created for the inaugural event in 2007; the souvenir program introduces the new Matadors to the campus symbols and traditions; though attendance at the Convocation is "strongly encouraged" and promoted throughout Orientation, the collaboration with University Housing and inclusion in the syllabus and assignments for the university 100 program serve as strong incentives for attendance; the University's Intercollegiate Athletes have also made an annual commitment to attend for their personal experience and to promote attendance at athletic events; when possible, the keynote speaker is also asked to provide an informal discussion for faculty prior to Convocation and to sign copies of their book at the reception.

The Convocation Program will end at approximately 7:15 p.m. and will be immediately followed with a reception on the Oviatt Library South Portico.  Refreshments and entertainment will be provided, and all are welcome to attend.

Click here to view the official 2017 Freshman Convocation page. 

Freshman Common Reading webpage.