Continuing a Gettysburg tradition, College leaders Dec. 12 honored nearly 50 students for their perseverance in completing degree requirements midyear.
President Janet Morgan Riggs ’77, in remarks at her final Midyear Graduation Recognition Ceremony before retirement, called on graduates to be problem solvers in a challenging world. Her charge to students: act with courage and integrity. She urged them to carry their Gettysburg experience forward and do great work as ethical leaders at home and abroad.
“Gettysburg College has prepared you to make a difference,” Riggs said. “In this chaotic time, it can be easy to lose ourselves in a sense of self-importance, in a race to the top. Instead of stepping over others, I encourage you to lift others up, to help them realize the promise that is within them, to engage with others in helping to make this world a better place.”
Italian Studies Prof. Alan Perry spoke on behalf of the faculty. He reflected on graduation as a “rite of passage.” And he drew parallels between the students’ achievements and 14th century Italian poet Dante’s quest for enlightenment, in which Dante is crowned “lord” of himself – “upright, wholesome and free…”
“I’d like to think that this evening we too as an institution now crown you all as lords of yourselves so that you may go forth and embrace the same mission,” Perry said. “Like Dante, you have done the hard work. You have sharpened your wits to engage problems that you might not even now foresee, and you have gained insight and experience in knowing how to work with others to resolve them.”
The annual Midyear Graduates Recognition Ceremony honors students who have completed degree requirements in August 2018 or are expected to complete their degrees in December 2018. The event concluded with a reception for students and guests.
All midyear graduates are invited to participate in May’s Commencement Weekend, where Newbery Medal-winning author Jerry Spinelli ’63 is set to deliver the keynote address.
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