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Convocation 2018

August 29, 2018 marked an exciting start to the Fall 2018 semester. Convocation officially kicked off the academic year with a welcome celebration in Ellsworth Theatre.  Students were welcomed and key leaders on campus shared inspiring words for the students.  All left with a gift of a “Be Mindful” rock as a source of positive motivation for the year. Following Convocation, Gator Fest was held on the lawn of the Ferry Administration Building and the Ashby Campus Center patio. Students had fun drinking smoothies, dunking people, and sliding down the giant water slide!

Diane Mello-Goldner, Ph.D., Dean of the College

Dean Mello-Goldner welcomed the new and returning students as well as faculty and staff. After explaining the meaning of Convocation, she went on to say how everyone in the theater is committed to all students’ personal and academic success. At the end of the ceremony she explained the significance of the Convocation “take-away” – the “Be Mindful” rock. Mindfulness is a main focus for the academic area of the College this year and she expressed a wish that everyone should be mindful not only in class but outside of class. She also went on to say that the rocks that people selected represent the PMC community – while they all look different on the outside, they all share a common message just as student success is the common theme for our diverse community.

Thomas M. O’Reilly, M.B.A., President

President O’Reilly welcomed all in the auditorium by sharing a welcome greeting in all of the languages spoken by PMC students!  He went on to talk about the mission of the College and how helping students succeed and graduate is our top priority.  He also thanked the faculty and staff for all that they do to help that happen.

Alumna Greeting:
Jammy Millet ’11, Director of Restorative Practices and Community Standards

Along with congratulating the entering class and wishing them luck, Jammy recalled how back in 2007, she was also sitting in Ellsworth as a first-year student having no idea what the next four years had in store for her. Jammy said how she discovered that it was the people around her — coaches, advisors, professors —  who provided her with the freedom to be her authentic self. She said that “if it wasn’t for my Pine Manor Family of professors and faculty and staff that helped me see myself as a woman of the world, I would have never felt empowered to become this authentic version of myself I had always envisioned and that’s a fact.”  She ended by wishing all students “love and clarity as you navigate through this upcoming school year!”

Upperclass Student Speakers: 

Wendy Napoleon ’20

Wendy, a double major in English and Psychology, encouraged all students to find the fire within them and to follow their dreams.  She also read an snippet of her poem “Everegreens” which likened the “fire burning within” all of those in the auditorium to never die just as “evergreens never die.”

Upperclass Student Speakers: 

Edwin Osias ‘18

Edwin, a Business and Management major graduating this December recalled his own start of college and provided students with his suggestions for success.

2018 Ruth Allinger Gibson Teaching Award Speaker:
Kelly DeFao, J.D., Assistant Professor of Sociology and Political Science

Professor DeFao was selected by students last spring for her excellence in teaching and for going “above and beyond” the typical duties of a faculty member to help her students.  She encouraged students to “never be afraid to try something new” and to remember that “all of us have the capacity to be successful.”  Professor DeFao’s keys to success were to:  “go to class, don’t just sit in class but ask questions and engage with others,  challenge yourself by taking different kids of classes, try something new out of the classroom like a club, challenge yourself to meet someone new each day, and be mindful of otehrs along the way.”  She ended with an invitation for students to destress by meeting with her “First Mate, Ronan the puppy” who is always available for hugs and petting.

Lisa Rodrigues, Associate Dean of Student Affairs and First Year Seminar Program

Lisa Rodrigues read a message from Dean Staci Weber who welcomed the students and stated that as we start this new academic year the College will “launch off Pine Manor College’s 107th year with a renewed commitment to building community and enhancing student success through a commitment to racial and social equity, restorative justice, and taking a trauma-informed approach to our work.”  Dean Weber also reminded us all of the specialness of the PMC community, “We have diversity of thoughts, ethnicities and races, genders and gender expression, religions, sexual orientations, socioeconomic backgrounds, and abilities.  We have bilingual and multilingual speakers and represent countries around the globe. The students on this campus bring resiliency, persistence, and the ability to navigate and overcome obstacles. This diversity enriches our learning and our thinking.  It makes us stronger and richer.”  After reading Dean Weber’s words, Lisa Rodrigues read the words of the Alma Mater and presented the Class of 2022 banner which will be hung in the Ashby Campus Center during this academic year.

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