“What you do now is up to you, and you’ll have lots of room to do things your own way. Make good decisions, because it matters. This is your job. Do it well. Think carefully about those choices and you’ll find there’s a whole world of opportunity,” said President Daniel H. Weiss to the 639 members of the Class of 2015.
The new students, who gathered in Kirby Sports Center, were officially welcomed to the College community by Weiss and Student Government president Matthew Grandon ’12 during Convocation ceremonies Thursday opening the 180th academic year. Classes for both new and returning students begin Monday, Aug. 29.
“Figure out what interests you and what drives your intellectual curiosity,” Grandon said to the first-year students. “It’s perfectly normal if you haven’t figured out your passions just yet. College is about finding them. Perhaps you’ll find your passion in biology, economics, psychology, chemistry, engineering, art, or religious studies. Whatever the case, your passions are those things that will come to define your identity.”
The College’s four-day orientation program is designed to focus on students’ intellectual and personal development and to help ease the transition to college life. The theme of orientation, and other curricular and co-curricular activities throughout the year, is “Righting Civil Wrongs.” Students will be introduced to the vibrancy of intellectual life at Lafayette by exploring the struggles faced by people around the world. The primary summer reading assignment was The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot.
Also speaking at Convocation were John Colatch, director of religious life and College chaplain; Wendy Hill, provost and dean of the faculty; Gregory MacDonald, dean of admissions and financial aid; Easton Mayor Sal Panto; and Hannah Stewart-Gambino, dean of the College. Pamela Gaary Holran ’88, president of the Alumni Association, presented the Class of 2015 flag to Kendall Glascott ’15 and John Siegel ’15.