First-time and transfer students and their families were welcomed by President Tuajuanda C. Jordan, faculty and staff, on the Campus’ Townhouse Green during the 2018 Convocation ceremony. With more than 500 students, it’s the largest number of first-year and transfer students choosing the College since 2011 and an increase of 17 percent when compared to fall 2017.
President Jordan addressed the crowd on a sunny afternoon overlooking the St. Mary’s River, “You are joining a rigorous community of scholars that aspires at all times to be just and supportive of an inclusive and diverse community. You bring to this community a wide range of life experiences. You will encounter individuals who have had both similar and dissimilar experiences. Celebrate the similarities and rejoice in the differences. Study and learn from them. Respect them.”
Vice President of Enrollment David Hautanen described the incoming class: “You hail from 14 states and the District of Columbia, as well as 23 of the 24 counties here in Maryland. You represent a wide range of school types and have found your way from 181 different high schools and 44 colleges including 21 community colleges. Your most recent home was as close as St Inigoes down the street and as far away as Germany with Australia being the furthest country of citizenship. Baltimore is the most common home town, with 22 students from Baltimore. More than 20 percent of you are among the first in your family to attend a four-year college. More than 15 percent of you are continuing the St. Mary’s tradition in your family, including a few of you who are the third of your siblings to attend the College. There are 209 men and 294 women. There are 126 varsity athletes with field hockey having the largest number. And, if your first name is Alexander or Emily, these are the most common first names.”
Following his remarks, Hautanen presented two scrolls listing the names of the Fall 2018 enrolling class to Provost/Dean of Faculty Michael Wick and Vice President of Student Affairs/Dean of Students Leonard Brown, symbolizing the passing of students from admissions to academia and student life.
Student Government Association President Andrew Messick ’19 said, “I also encourage all of you, I even challenge you to reach beyond who you were in high school. Don’t let your last four years define who you are here at St. Mary’s. You all have the ability to go beyond that, to create change here, to create a new version of who you are.”
By Sunday, August 26, all new and returning Seahawks will be moved in to campus with classes beginning on Monday, August 27.
St. Mary’s College of Maryland is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education through 2024-2025. St. Mary’s College, designated the Maryland state honors college in 1992, is ranked one of the best public liberal arts schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. Approximately 1,600 students attend the college, nestled on the St. Mary’s River in Southern Maryland.