Applause is given to the students after the Convocation ceremony.

Applause is given to the students after the Convocation ceremony.

Convocation week at Missouri Valley College welcomed freshmen, honored student leaders, and celebrated the opening of the new art gallery.

The busy week started on Aug. 30 with a presentation by Margaret Owen, the first artist to display artwork in the new Morris Gallery of Contemporary Art, located in the Technology Center. A ribbon-cutting ceremony, officially opening the gallery, was held that evening.  (See the story on the Delta Online about artist Margaret Owen by Paulene-Wendy Ntsame Assoumou.)

A Convocation dinner was held in the evening in the R. Wilson Brown Room.

Students who submitted work that was published in the Purple Patch, the MVC literary and arts magazine, talked about their creative process at a special presentation on Wednesday afternoon, Aug. 31.

Justin Homan and Jordan Dickson, seniors and co-captains of the MVC Golf team, joined their Coach Jim Anderson at the Student Leader Dinner.

A second special dinner, honoring student leaders from organizations, academic projects, and athletic teams, was held the next evening, Aug. 31. Both events occurred in the R. Wilson Brown Room.

Dr. Ed Elliott, president emeritus of the University of Central Missouri and former MVC interim president, was the speaker for the Student Leader Dinner. Elliott spoke about 10 concepts of leadership. Some of those concepts included maintaining integrity and honest, treating people fairly, wanting to learn more, being tolerant of others, and adopting the habit of striving for high standards. Elliott said the most challenging enemy of leadership is prejudice.

Wrestler Rashona Colbert meets Dr. Ed Elliott, speaker at the Student Leader Dinner who started the MVC wrestling program.

“Ethical behavior is essential to being an effective leader,” he said. He advised the student leaders to “stay informed and be adaptable.”Elliott said he has enjoyed a 55-year association with Missouri Valley College, beginning in 1956 when he was a freshman at William Jewell College and competed against MVC athletes and started making friends from here. Elliott also became a faculty member and coach at MVC and, in 1965, started the MVC wrestling program.

The Convocation ceremony, in the morning, Sept. 1, was the official welcome to the new freshmen class. Convocation was held at the Burns Complex gym, using large fans to help reduce the effects of the high humidity of the day.  Carrying national or state flags, students represented 33 countries, 44 states, and two U.S. territories. ROTC students conducted the U.S. flag ceremony.

MVC President Bonnie Humphrey, Marshall Mayor Mark Gooden, MVC Chaplain Pam Sebastian, Faculty Senate President Harold Hynick, and Natalie Cotto-Garcia, the president of the Student Government Association, addressed the large crowd of students, faculty, staff, and guests. Joining Humphrey in recognition of student leaders in academics and athletics were Heath Morgan, dean of Students, and Tom Fifer, vice president of Operations and athletic director.

David L. Roberts, assistant professor of Mass Communication who was the recipient of the 2011 John McCallum Excellence in Teaching Award in May, presented the Convocation speech. His theme was about students “moving forward,” whether it involved patience for being in a line or working toward a degree or other achievements.  He said that work moves people forward.

Roberts also noted a quote “To be enlightened is to lighten up.” He said to be enlightened and to lighten up means having “a broad mind, a tough skin, and a generous heart.”

President Humphrey and others addressed the students.

He also summed up the steps for success in a classroom. “Go to class. Take notes. Read your textbook. And study.” (See the full text of Roberts’ speech on the Delta Online website.)

Before the benediction, the Rev. Sebastian led some freshmen in ringing the “shells into bells” ornament that symbolizes a call for peace.

Members of the MVC choir, under the direction of Music Associate Professor Diana Malan, performed the song “Bridge Over Troubled Water.”


Students at MVC represent these other countries: Antigua, Argentina, Australia, the Bahamas, Bosnia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, France, Germany, Ghana, Honduras, India, Japan, Kenya, Latvia, Mexico, Micronesia, Mongolia, Serbia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Venezuela, Vietnam, and Zimbabwe. Students from U.S. territories: Guam and Puerto Rico. With most students coming from Missouri, other states represented in the MVC student population: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

David Roberts

About David Roberts

David Roberts has contributed 68 posts to The Delta.

David L. Roberts is an assistant professor of Mass Communication and adviser for the Delta projects. Born in Wyoming where he once started and produced a weekly newspaper, he has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Arizona and a master’s degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

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