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LTU hosts Convocation to welcome first-year students

Release Date: August 29, 2021

LTU President Virinder Moudgil (center) proudly displays the Global Citizen Award with LTU Provost Tarek Sobh and Beth Baker, a member of the university’s board of trustees.
LTU photo / Matt Roush

SOUTHFIELD—Lawrence Technological University welcomed a record 480 first-year students and their families in a New Student Convocation ceremony Saturday morning, held at the university’s Blue Devils Stadium.

The event featured the presentation of Lawrence Tech’s Global Citizen Award to LTU President Virinder Moudgil, who has announced his retirement effective Dec. 31.

LTU Provost Tarek Sobh noted that the university is preparing students for job titles that do not yet exist, and added: “Benjamin Franklin once said that ‘an investment in knowledge pays the best interest’—and in an ever-advancing technological world, a technological education in all the

Lawrence Tech disciplines and majors is the most valuable asset… In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. ‘The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education.’ Let’s not forget—LTU students turn dreams into reality, so let’s start building a better future!”

Moudgil created the Global Citizen Award in 2014 as part of his Global Leadership Initiative that also includes an intensive workshop for first-year students teaching them about the world’s many cultures. In his speech accepting the award, Moudgil said he created it “to recognize the substantive change in how people and the activities of research and commerce were changing. No longer are we isolated by boundaries, borders, oceans, or mountains. Increasingly, we interact with individuals who are separated not by an office wall, but by entire time zones, by cultures, by different ways of approaching problems and achieving results.”

Moudgil urged the new students to get to know their fellow LTU Blue Devils from other countries—45 nations are represented among LTU’s student body. He quoted Mark Twain that international experiences “are fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.” He added: “You have in you the potential to be leaders in the U.S. or your native countries—to serve as diplomats, prime ministers, presidents or foreign ministers, educators or business men and women of international stature—your LTU degree and global experience will empower you to seize such opportunities.”

Moudgil was named LTU’s seventh president in 2012, and has presided over a period of significant growth and improvement in campus facilities, programs, student life, fundraising, and community outreach. During his leadership, LTU built two new residence calls, the Detroit Center for Design and Technology, the Taubman Complex and its Marburger STEM Center, and the Centrepolis Accelerator, one of the few manufacturing-focused business incubators in the nation.

Moudgil received a PhD in biochemistry from Banaras Hindu University in India in 1972 and did post-doctoral cancer research at the Mayo Clinic from 1973 to 1976. Prior to joining LTU, he was provost and vice president for academic affairs at Oakland University, where he co-chaired the committee that developed the Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine. His scientific work has appeared in some 250 publications, and he has edited or been series editor of nine books.

Past recipients of the Global Citizen Award have included the late U.S. Sen Carl Levin, former Michigan Gov. and U.S. Rep. Jim Blanchard, former Microsoft Corp. regional vice president John Fikany, Canadian Consul General Douglas George, former Ford Motor Co. Mobility President Marcy Klevorn, and Jean Mallebay-Vazqueur, honorary consul of France in Michigan.

Lawrence Technological University, www.ltu.edu, is a private university founded in 1932 that offers nearly 100 programs through the doctoral level in its Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Business and Information Technology, and Engineering. PayScale lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 11 percent of universities for the salaries of its graduates, and U.S. News and World Report lists it in the top tier of best Midwestern universities. Students benefit from small class sizes and a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 107-acre campus include more than 100 student organizations and NAIA varsity sports.


First-year students and their families in Blue Devils Stadium for Saturday's Convocation.LTU photo / Matt Roush.


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