(Photo: Emily Schneider)
As tradition at Regis, the first Friday of the school year marks the celebratory convocation of the new freshman class into our ranks. On Friday, September 1, the chapel was filled with new faces and warm hearts of the class of 2021. With a class close to 550 students, all the seats in the chapel were occupied by packages of potential. Along with Regis’ newest students, the esteemed faculty sat in the entrance seating and Father President Fitzgibbons took the podium first.
Asking us to join in a blessing of the new class, Father President Fitzgibbons reminded us of the unity of our community as we “together seek truth courageously and compassionately.” Building relationships at Regis makes us more human as we embark together on the quest for truth and meaning.
Vice President of Student Affairs Barbara Wilcots took the stand after Father President and introduced the motto of the class of 2021: Where do we go from here? Academic Dean Tom Bowie laid the foundation to the answer of this question.
“[At Regis] You’ll see your preconceptions challenged, truths questioned, and character formed,” Dean Bowie declared. Regis is not only an academic challenge but also rather, a challenge to become better people, driven by a common purpose. Attending Regis is a choice, and Dean Bowie shared, “you’ve made our house, your home.” What does this mean exactly? You chose us as your alma mater, which reveals your personal values. As a new member of this community, you are entrusted with our values as well. These values, as described by Dean Bowie, are the truth, integrity, exchange of ideas, and service to others. Through these four values, we learn together what it means to live a good life as we strive to answer the timeless question of St. Ignatius: how ought we to live?
During convocation, students also heard from the co-presidents of the Honor Society at Regis, Josh Madrid and Shae McGuiness. McGuinness shared, “Take these years, and find what you are called to do.” These words ring true as Regis is a place to discover our personal calling.
After the speakers, students signed their names into the register of Regis, as many classes had done before. During the signing of the register, the piano played in the background and three Regis students expressed various hopes. Senior Maggie Lacey, Senior Jorge Palacios, and Junior Elise Loreen shared some of their own aspirations for their time at Regis, which many of the freshmen could connect with.
Once registers were signed, the Director of Admissions, Sarah Engel, called us to live fulfilling lives and participate in our education. In the closing of convocation, the Director of University Ministry, Kristi Consalves-McCabe lead a prayer to inspire us to seek Magis in our lives as we become men and women in service for and with others.
There is no denying that Regis is uniquely empowering and positively exceptional, and the welcoming at convocation is the proof. Students that join this community, become more than college students at Regis, they become members of a passionate society dedicated to truth, respect, and character. From entrance to exit, the journey of academics at Regis extends deeper than a degree. This journey we embark on as students shapes the rest of our lives as we learn and live with each other, seeking our calling of what we can become. To the class of 2021, welcome!