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Shepherd University welcomes Class of 2023 with convocation ceremony

August 30, 2019
Tabitha Johnston - Chronicle Staff , Shepherdstown Chronicle

SHEPHERDSTOWN -- Shepherd University welcomed its Class of 2023, during its community convocation ceremony in the Wellness Center Arena on Friday morning.

Hundreds of freshmen and new students sat and listened, as 2019-2020 Student Government Association President Allison Lott opened the ceremony with some encouraging remarks.

"It is an absolute privilege to welcome you all to this outstanding institution," Lott said. "As incoming students, you're probably a little intimidated by entering this stage of your life. Take a deep breath. Now let it out. Because you've got it! I'm confident in you. You can do this.

Article Photos

Shepherd University College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Dean Rob Tudor speaks to the Class of 2023, before leading them in singing the Shepherd University Alma Mater in the Wellness Center Arena on Friday morning. Tabitha Johnston

"Absolutely you did make the right decision in attending Shepherd University. Shepherd has allowed me to best explore my passion in the classroom as a biology major," Lott said.

"Make some memories, take some pictures and have some fun. Best of luck to each and every one of you, and welcome to the Rambling!"

Following Lott, West Virginia Professor of the Year 2018 and Professor of English Heidi Hanrahan made the students break out into laughter with her list of '90s references interspersed throughout her speech.

"The faculty here are passionate about their fields," Hanrahan said. "[Their passion for] higher education, specifically in liberal arts education, has made a tremendous impact on my life, and I sincerely hope it will also be for yours. Let Shepherd be the place where each and every one of you become citizens who can change the world."

Shepherd University President Mary J.C. Hendrix gave the final speech of the morning, before College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Dean Robert Tudor closed the event by leading the audience in singing the Happy Birthday chorus to members of the audience with upcoming birthdays and in singing the Shepherd University Alma Mater.

"I am just delighted to welcome you to Shepherd University, my beloved alma mater. We welcome you, as the newest class of Shepherd Rams," Hendrix said. "Monday will mark the beginning of the next phase of your life. Your social sphere will widen, your interests will deepen and you will be challenged to be the best version of yourself.

"College is a time for serious academic effort, but please, . . . spend some time getting to know your new home," Hendrix said. "There is always something different going on here. I challenge you to work hard, excel in your classes and meet your obligations. Class of 2023, welcome to Shepherdstown. We are so glad you are here!"



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