Winter Convocation

Dear Orange Friends:

This week we welcomed 250 new undergraduate and graduate students and their parents, families, and friends at Winter New Student Convocation. The Convocation takes place the Saturday morning before spring semester classes begin. It was held in Setnor Auditorium at Crouse College.

Our new students this semester hail from 9 different nations and 15 different states. Compared to August when we welcome thousands of students at a convocation in the Dome, Winter Convocation is an intimate ceremony, but it is just as meaningful.

People start here in January for many reasons. Some are transferring from another institution; some are first-year students; some are new to the Syracuse campus because they began their first semester at a Syracuse program abroad; some are exchange students; and some are recent veterans. The Convocation provides our incoming students a formal winter welcome as they start their academic year.

The keynote speaker for the ceremony was Keith Alford, Chair of the School of Social Work in the Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics. His theme was “Ready to Excel.” Professor Alford told students to “get to know yourself, your likes and dislikes, your abilities and apprehensions, but also seek to understand differences.”

Outside Setnor Auditorium that morning, the temperature was in the single digits and there was driving snow. Inside, student Angie Pati, Senior Class Marshal, assured the new students that: “It’s perfectly acceptable to wear thermal underwear, two pairs of pants, and the mittens your grandmother knitted you—on top of another pair of gloves.” She also explained that the students had arrived at one of the warmest and most welcoming places on Earth. I agreed with her both times.



Kent Syverud
Chancellor Kent Syverud