Convocation attendance

Milton Oswald

Congratulations to the New Student Week Choir and everyone involved with Thursday’s convocation. President Beck’s words were boldly spoken, and gave the Lawrence community a lot to think about regarding our school’s mission.
The low student attendance at the event is cause for concern. Although not supplemented by the normal droves of Appletonians (perhaps because the convocation material was largely Lawrence-centered) I expected a respectable turnout for the first convocation of the year. The convocation series is a central part of the Lawrence experience. It is one of the few opportunities for the entire community to join together in a common experience, providing a springboard for campus-wide dialogue that can be enjoyed only by an institution of our size. A renewed interest in the convocation series should be fostered by faculty, staff, and students alike.
The campus-wide phone messages and e-mails that used to publicize the event have been conspicuously absent in the last year, and the posters around campus are unnecessarily wordy. Faculty can increase interest in the event by mentioning it in class, or using its subject as a starting point for dialogue with students. Students can support the events by simply attending, and convincing their friends and roommates that an hour spent at convo is more worthwhile (in most cases) than an extra hour of sleep.