UNCW Officially Welcomes Class of 2022 During Convocation Ceremony

Monday, August 20, 2018

UNCW leaders and faculty officially welcomed the Class of 2022 during convocation Aug. 20 at Trask Coliseum.

The ceremony was a part of a series of events to welcome more than 2,000 new Seahawks. Before convocation, more than 115 faculty and student leaders met with first-year students to provide guidance on academic success. The students later walked to Trask together, known as the annual “Trask Trek.”

UNCW Provost Marilyn Sheerer noted that convocation marks the beginning of the academic year and a lifelong journey. Many of the students are just starting to discover who they will be, she said.

“I particularly like the saying, ‘Come as you are, but don’t leave as you came!’ Be willing to listen, to interact and to explore, and you will leave a more fully developed person,” she said. “In your time at UNCW, you will be exposed to ideas you’ve never considered. You will discover new interests – often in unexpected places. We want you to broaden your perspective – there is a big world out there, and your education to-date has barely scratched the surface.”

Chancellor Jose V. Sartarelli encouraged students to spend the next four years pursuing knowledge that will lead to a fulfilling career; to find their passions, which will “help you build rewarding lives; and grow as citizens of a world that will look to you as leaders.”

“Only you can decide which path you will take and how high you will soar,” he said.

Sartarelli also congratulated students on becoming a part of the UNCW community. “As students at UNCW, you will be surrounded by opportunities to expand your minds and challenge yourselves to go farther than you ever thought possible,” he said.

Alison Taylor, professor in the Department of Biology and Marine Biology, delivered the keynote address. She asked students to focus on three important things throughout their academic career: be an engaged learner and cultivate a growth mindset; embrace growth, which necessarily means change; and always remember that professors, staff and fellow students are committed to their success.

Taylor compared the students’ academic journey to a river run.

“Four years will rush by like a grade 5 river. Keep paddling, work hard and stay afloat,” she said. “Our job is to guide your river run; your job is to propel yourselves onward with commitment and enthusiasm. It’s a collaboration. I, for one, can’t wait to see what we can accomplish together and look forward to celebrating your graduation.”

Classes begin on Aug. 22.

-- Venita Jenkins


2018 Convocation