North Park University faculty and staff welcomed new students and their families in a warm, rousing Welcome Convocation on Aug. 24.
In her opening remarks, President Mary Surridge encouraged students to “say yes” to all that North Park has to offer, from playing a sport or starting a club, cheering on athletes at events, or participating in North Park’s Catalyst__606 program.
Provost Michael O. Emerson, whose daughter Leah graduated from North Park last spring, told parents to let their child explore different majors.
“Every major we offer here leads to a job,” Dr. Emerson said. “My own daughter came here as a scared child and left as a confident adult. She found her dream job after just two weeks.”
Representatives of the Student Government Association also addressed the students, encouraging them to be open to opportunities to engage with fellow students.
SGA President Rakiiba Vaalele ’19 came to North Park from American Samoa without a winter coat and temporarily questioned her decision to come here. Eventually, though, she says she was warmed by the friendships she made through various clubs and activities.
Dr. Gregor Thuswaldner, Dean of Arts and Sciences, prayed for the students, after which everyone sang North Park’s Alma Mater, “The Blue and The Gold.”
The Convocation kicked off Threshold Weekend for North Park’s new students.