Union College President Marcia Hawkins, Ph.D., addressed new students at the annual induction ceremony, offering them words of encouragement as they begin their college careers.
Hawkins told new students that their decision to pursue a college degree was a wise one. “Congratulations for making the choice to change your life and the lives of those around you,” she said.
Hawkins told students she identifies with the internal struggles they might have felt when making the decision to leave home: she recently moved away from family and friends in Texas to begin a new chapter of her life at Union College. It was a change she is glad she had the courage to make and is pleased that new students will be entering this journey along with her.
“You’re new to Union, and I’m new to Union. We’re in this together,” Hawkins said. “I want to hand a diploma to each of you.”
She advised students to “be bold” when faced with making other difficult decisions. She also assured the students that they had the entire Union community, including herself, to support them in the decisions they make along the way.
The annual induction ceremony, known as the CIRCLES program, is an event that formally recognizes commitment to the Union College core values. New students pledge to uphold those values, and the Union community, in turn, vows to help them succeed. Community members from campus and beyond presented each new student with a medallion, which symbolizes the pledge they made.