Notes from Ransom Hall: A Higher Ed Blog

The movement we need is on our shoulders

Sean Decatur
October 30, 2013

Last weekend’s inauguration festivities were, in a word, fabulous.  I was very moved by the show of support from all parts of the Kenyon community:  students, faculty, staff, trustees, alumni, and parents.  Traditions and ceremonies bring a community together, providing an opportunity to renew our connections to each other, the institution, and our shared values.  We certainly did that on Saturday, whether by sharing in collective awe and silence during “Amazing Grace” at the formal ceremony, singing “Kokosing Farewell” in the rain in front of a brightly lit Old Kenyon, or screaming the lyrics of “Hey Jude” en masse in a packed Peirce Hall.

While the intense emotions of Saturday began to fade on Sunday (as we returned to the reality of our work here on campus – taking midterms, grading midterms, carrying out the routine work of the institution), we must keep that strong community spirit with us.  There is a lot of work ahead for all of us to do, and I will be outlining details in a future blog post.  But, the challenges ahead are difficult, and they will require our shared commitment and effort.

In the meantime, again thanks to everyone for the warm welcome and kind greetings to me and my family.  Thanks as well to all of the students who participated in the event, including (but not limited to): the student organizations who march in the formal ceremony; the summer students who presented their work at the poster sessions; the athletes who had games over the weekend;and  the Chamber Singers, who gave spectacular performances both Friday night and Saturday afternoon.  The weekend's activities were the result of hours and hours of planning by the inauguration committee (which organized and began meeting even before I arrived on campus).  Of course, everything went smoothy because of the hard work and effort of many staff who worked through the weekend, including folks from AVI, maintenance, campus safety, and the college relations office.

For those who have missed my entries, I am back to blogging after a brief hiatus.  More to come soon, so keep an eye out for a new post soon.