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Fall Convocation Collage

“To Be Young, Gifted and Black, Brown and White” 

Shaw University’s Opening Convocation was replete with all the pomp and circumstance that one expects from institutions of higher learning. The University's student chorus and Platinum Sound band performed as a procession of faculty, staff, and students filled C.C. Spaulding Gymnasium on Thursday, September 20, 2018. The invocation by Chaplain Dr. Gerald Thomas and welcomes by Ryan Wright, SGA President, and Ayoka Gay, National Alumni Association President helped set the tone for the event.

The Opening Convocation is the welcome and charge to the incoming Freshman Class. President Paulette Dillard, poised with grace and pride, poetically began her message to the Class of 2022 with these words, “This class will forever be a unique group in a very special way because you are the class with which I began my journey as the 18th President of this historic institution.” President Dillard's message evoked connectivity and reverberated energy of dignity and purpose among those gathered.

The speech peppered with historical notes and facts of history from the Civil Rights Era of 1960 to the Black Lives Matter movement of today. The eloquence in which she delivered her charge to the students included six actions that she charged students to take:

  1. Imagine a world in which you want to live then while you are here strive and acquire the skills to make that world a reality.
  2. Embrace adulthood – coming of age brings with it certain privileges and responsibilities key among these is "to vote."
  3. Stand for something. Get involved.
  4. Learn to think/problem solve.
  5. Enjoy the journey.
  6. Finish what you started here today!

President Dillard’s message ushered in a New Era of Excellence at Shaw University.

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