Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Fall convocation welcomes largest freshmen class

September 1, 2021
<p>A hallway in the Breslin Center photographed during a game against OSU on Feb. 25, 2021.</p>

A hallway in the Breslin Center photographed during a game against OSU on Feb. 25, 2021.

Photo by Alyte Katilius | The State News

Provost Teresa K. Woodruff gave a warm and enthusiastic welcome to first-year students at the Breslin Student Event Center Monday, Aug. 30, at the 2021 Fall Convocation.

The annual ceremony is intended to officially induct new students into the MSU community, introduce prominent faculty and inspire Spartans to embrace all that MSU has to offer. 

New Spartans filled the stadium to receive the official welcome to the MSU community from President Samuel L. Stanley, Woodruff, Interim Vice President for Student Affairs and Service Vennie Gore, and Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education and Dean of Undergraduate Studies Mark Largent.

Associate director in the College of Agriculture and Natural Science's Office of Diversity and Inclusion Emily Sorroche followed Woodruff with a reading of the land acknowledgement — a formal statement that recognizes, respects and affirms that there is an irreducible ongoing relationship between indigeonous people and the land. 

Then, deans and faculty individually welcomed the new students on behalf of their respective colleges and offices.

After the welcome, Woodruff returned to introduce Largent as the host for the remainder of the ceremony.

“I am hot, and I am masked, and I don’t care," Largent said. "I’m really really happy to be here.The administrators, the staff, and the faculty, we have missed what we are experiencing today and we are extraordinarily excited about this fall.” 

Largent then welcomed MSU students and professors to speak.

Arts and humanities senior Addison Walton read her original poem titled “Precious,” while Marcos Caballero, Associate Professor in physics and astronomy, offered a message of support, belonging, opportunity and hope to the new students who may be feeling the anxiety that comes with such a big change.

Associated Students of Michigan State University President Georgia Frost told her story of initial homesickness, estrangement and loneliness. She said that with time, she found her home at MSU, and that with patience, the new Spartans will too.

Environmental economics and agribusiness management senior Nikunj Agarwal offered the international student welcome and computer engineering sophomore Ishwari Kapale shared how the Spartan community inspired her, challenged her, assisted her and welcomed her. 

Finally, Stanley closed the ceremony with the official induction of the largest entering class in MSU’s history. 

“As the 21st president of Michigan State University, I extend my warmest welcome and officially induct you into Michigan State’s community of scholars, with all the rights and responsibilities this confers upon you,” Stanley said. “May you grow and thrive here in the banks of the Red Cedar River and embrace all that Michigan State University has to offer. I offer you my congratulations on your accomplishments thus far and my best wishes for everything in front of you.”

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