Nearly 500 new students started their college careers Friday night at Lawrence Technological University in the university’s annual Convocation ceremony at LTU’s Don Ridler Field House.
Echoing a bit of the pomp of a Commencement ceremony they hope to see in a few years, Convocation treats Lawrence Tech’s new students to a processional of the university’s top educational and administrative officials in full academic regalia, the Lawrence Tech Pep Band playing inspiring music, and speeches from LTU President Virinder Moudgil and LTU Student Government President Alyssa Melotnik.
Moudgil mentioned LTU’s roots in Henry Ford’s Highland Park manufacturing complex, part of the vision shared by Ford and LTU’s founding Lawrence brothers to turn laborers and tradesmen into engineers, executives, scientists – leaders and innovators for whom anything is possible.
He also recognized LTU faculty that give undergraduates participation in leading-edge research – participation not typically found in larger schools – into advances ranging from new medical cures to energy conservation to online security. And he recognized LTU students involved in honor societies, sports, advanced research and career-building internships.
And what academic ceremony would be complete without an award? Convocation is also the conclusion of LTU’s Global Village program, which 125 of the new students participated in this year. And part of that program is the presentation of LTU’s Global Citizen Award. This year, the award went to Douglas George, the Consul General of Canada in Detroit.
George pointed out that he didn’t originally intend to go into the diplomatic corps – he was originally a zoology major intent on solving the problems of the Great Lakes. But he chose to live in an international residence hall in college, and met students from many other countries, developing his interest in foreign service to his nation.
Staying open to new experiences was also the theme of Melotnik’s presentation, in which she congratulated the new students. She said a unique advantage of Lawrence Tech is that students are “innovators and creators and explorers. That’s why LTU is a perfect fit for people like you and me.” She said she’s changed majors three times and “could easily do it five more times,” because the university offers so many interesting academic programs.
Fall semester classes at Lawrence Tech began Monday, Aug. 22.