Flagler welcomes incoming class at 2014 convocation ceremony
Members of the incoming Flagler College freshmen class were handed railroad spikes, a symbol of railroad pioneer Henry Flagler’s legacy, as they entered Wednesday’s convocation ceremony. The spikes represent each student’s college education as the first step in their own life legacy.
Flagler College president William T. Abare Jr. spoke to the students at the Lewis Auditorium and gave them advice on the journey new students would soon embark upon.
"Take advantage of new opportunities. Find ways to get out of your comfort zone and develop as a student and a person. Get involved outside of your academic pursuits," said Abare. "If you do these things, I'm confident you'll look back on your college experience as one of the most rewarding of your life."
The convocation speaker was Rev. Wayne Meisel, Director of the Center for Faith and Service at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago.
"When you come here, you come having accomplished much and then you hit the delete button and start over," said Meisel, who invoked the late Robin Williams, urging students to seize the day. "You are the leaders of tomorrow only if you wait. Don't wait."
Meisel has also served as the Director of Faith and Service at the Cousins Foundation in Atlanta, GA. and was the founding President of the Bonner Foundation. As a Presidential appointee to the Commission on National and Community Service, Meisel served as one of the architects of the AmeriCorps programs and also as a charter board member of Teach for America.
The ceremony was part of Flagler’s Building Your Legacy program, which includes First Year Advisers, a four-day orientation spent in a variety of academic and social events to ease the transition from high school to college, and an honor pledge. The program is designed to make sure that all first year students begin with a solid foundation for what will become their legacy.
Flagler College fall semester classes begin on Aug. 27.