Welcoming the Class of '18 – August 27, 2014
The Japanese Taiko drummers that traditionally usher in Occidental Convocation are a difficult act to follow. Happily, the Class of 2018 is an eager and attentive bunch. As this year's featured speaker, I used the opportunity to shed light on the nuanced history of the liberal arts curriculum in the moments before students set off for the first classes of their college careers. It was my pleasure to participate in this time-honored Occidental ceremony.
Robert Winter Honorary Degree Ceremony – June 22, 2014
Inducting a class into the Fifty Year Club is always a cause for great celebration, but the Class of 1964 had an extra reason to cheer this year. Their program, one of the many highlights of Alumni Reunion Weekend, included a College Honorary Degree Ceremony for Rober Winter, Arthur G. Coons Professor in the History of Ideas Emeritus. The animated and beloved professor known as "Bungalow Bob" delighted Occidental students for 32 years and is a foremost expert in Los Angeles architecture.
McKinnon Center Dedication – April 26, 2014
Simply put, Occidental's new McKinnon Center for Global Affairs and Choi Auditorium is our commitment to global citizenship made visible. The dedication, which took place in the newly renovated Johnson Hall, showcased the teaching, curriculum design, research, and public outreach which students are engaged in on a range of global and regional topics. Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean delivered the auditorium’s official inaugural lecture, aptly titled, "The First Global Generation and How They Are Changing Everything.” Thanks to the generosity of those who made the McKinnon Center possible, Oxy remains at the forefront of global affairs teaching, research and engagement in the world.
Lunar New Year Celebration – February 3, 2014
In celebration of Lunar New Year, I joined Professor Xiao-huang Yin and members of the International Programs Office in sharing a meal with students from China and Taiwan in Los Angeles' Chinatown. It was a wonderful opportunity to explore one of our city's most vibrant neighborhoods as well as gain insight into the cross-cultural adaptations that our international students create each day. In 2013 Occidental College was home to more than 100 international students from 27 different countries.
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