Grove City College ushered in the 2019-20 academic year Tuesday with Opening Convocation, a ceremony steeped in tradition that serves as a formal welcome to new students and an opportunity to inspire the campus community in the year ahead.
Opening with a trumpet fanfare by members of the Grove City College Wolverine Marching Band and the procession of faculty in full regalia, the service in Harbison Chapel featured hymns, scripture, prayer and an address by College President Paul J. McNulty ’80.
McNulty discussed the Christ-centered learning and living community that’s been established and stewarded for nearly a century and half at Grove City College.
Community is one of Grove City College’s five values, McNulty said. The others – faithfulness, excellence, stewardship and independence – reveal their meaning easily, he said, but community and needs to be approached intentionally by looking at scripture and seeing what God’s word says about “the community we aspire to be.”
The College’s community is characterized by its relationship with Christ, its interdependence, diversity and countercultural character, he said. “We are a highly diverse group of people transformed by the Holy Spirit,” McNulty said.
“We face significant and assorted headwinds … and surely one of our strengths as we face challenges is our authentic community,” he said. Citing writer David Brooks, who argues that the modern ethos of “hyper-individualism” has thinned the national community, McNulty declared: “We are a thick community.”
Grove City College’s nearly 500-member freshmen Class of 2023 arrived on campus last week and began classes this week, along with the rest of the student body, which also includes transfer, international exchange, dual-enrolled high school and adult education students.