Class of 2027 Officially Joins the Ursinus Community
President Robyn E. Hannigan welcomed more than 400 members of the Class of 2027 to the Ursinus community at the Ursinus Day Academic Convocation, which was held on the lawn in front of the Berman Museum of Art.
“I used to tell my students that you learned everything you need to know in ‘general chemistry,’” said Hannigan during her opening remarks. “In truth, you learned almost everything there, but it is through a liberal education, such as the one you will experience here at Ursinus, that you begin to connect the dots—and to truly understand the world and your place in it. And perhaps most importantly, you learn how to bring together all ways of knowing to create new knowledge, and to shape a world where all realize sustainability and prosperity.”
Chaplain and Director of Religious and Spiritual Life Betty Wright-Riggins provided the invocation, and Benjamin Douglas ’24, president of Ursinus College Student Government, explained the significance of the Ursinus colors of red, old gold, and black.
Presentations of student and academic life included performances by members of a cappella group B’Naturals and Olivia Lesinski ’26 of Escape Velocity dance troupe, as well as a chemistry magic show by David Laucks Hain Professor of Chemistry Mark Ellison.
Vice President for Inclusion and Community Engagement Heather Lobban-Viravong, who also serves as the interim vice president for academic affairs and dean of the college, invoked the importance of the four questions of the Quest core curriculum. “As you engage with the four open questions in CIE and your other courses, remember that you’re not just fulfilling an academic expectation, but you’re beginning to shape a life, and shape your own expectations for who you want to be in the world. Don’t let the next four years be simply transactional—just getting to a degree.”
Professor of Media and Communication Studies Lynne Edwards ’88 brought the students to their feet with a fun-loving “vibe check” before she reminisced about her own arrival at understanding the power of questions; and Director of the Institute for Student Success Katie O’Brien presented the first-year advising award to Professor of Business and Economics and Department Chair Jennifer VanGilder.
As is tradition, the class was met by a “gauntlet” of cheering students, staff, and faculty as they exited the ceremony.