Convocation kicks off new academic year at Mansfield

MANSFIELD – The 158th academic year at Mansfield University got underway with convocation Aug. 22.

Steven Stein, associate professor of biology, was the featured speaker.

In his address, “Activate Your Mind for Some Serious Fun,” Stein offered the incoming freshman advice on how to do that.

“Widen your comfort zone,” he told them. “Don’t just sit there and listen to your professors, really get involved and investigate for yourself. The best way to do that is through research and other scholarly work. And follow your dream. Do what you want to do and do what you love.”

“You’re really lucky,” Stein added. “MU is a great place where you can get a great education and reach you dreams. Now it’s up to you to make it happen, so activate your mind and have some serious fun.”

President Fran Hendricks welcomed the campus community to the beginning of a new academic year and addressed most of his remarks toward the incoming freshman class. He recalled being in their position 40 years ago as an incoming freshman at Mansfield and offered what he calls “the five simple truths of MU.”

“One, you will make lifelong friends and some of you will find the love of your life,” Hendricks said. “Two, our faculty, staff and coaches will change your life’s trajectory if you work hard and allow them to. Three, success in college is like success in life, it’s all about balance. Number four, each of you is destined to do amazing things. And five, be careful of the pictures taken of you. They may end up as a poster on the South Hall Mall years after you graduate.”

Hendricks, a 1979 graduate, was referring to pictures of him during his college days and that were on display for Mansfield’s opening weekend.

Convocation is presented by the Mansfield University Senate.