August 30, 2019

Making the Flame Shine Brighter: New Student Orientation 2019-20

New students Yaxin Li and Dana Avgil
Welcome to CGU: New students Yaxin Li (Drucker) and Dana Avgil (DPE) pose proudly with their CGU flame pins.

So what made Steve Kim (EMBA ’12) decide to enroll as a working adult at the Drucker School of Management?

Well, he says, aside from the nice dinners provided for him and his classmates, it was the sense of teamwork and support that he realized he’d receive during his grad school journey.

“There’s an accountability support structure in place here,” he said, “and it’s very much like what you find in business. In business, you don’t do it on your own. It’s all about teamwork.”

Kim’s comment was part of his keynote remarks at this year’s New Student Orientation program, during which the university community welcomed the arrival of more than 450 new students (for the summer/fall semesters).

The program and opening ceremony were held earlier this week on Mudd Quadrangle on the north side of the Honnold Mudd Library.

CGU President Len Jessup addresses new students
Full house: President Len Jessup addresses an audience of new students during this year’s NSO program.

Along with Kim’s remarks, the orientation morning program featured greetings from Kunaal Kapoor, 2019-2020 GSC president and the event’s emcee; President Len Jessup, who described the warm sense of community that the new students will enjoy; and Provost Patricia Easton, who presided over the “ignite the flame” pinning ceremony.

Dean of Students & Campus Life Quamina Carter closed the morning program and provided a practical overview of student services.

GSC President Kunaal Kapoor (left) and keynote speaker Steve Kim
GSC President Kunaal Kapoor (left); keynote speaker Steve Kim (EMBA ’12)

This year’s orientation day was sponsored in part by Doubletree by Hilton of Pomona, Ontario International Airport, Image Concepts, Orbit Event Rentals, the Sheraton Fairplex Hotel & Conference Center, Barre Element, Dog Haus Biergarten, Bank of America, Visiting Angels, Bright Road Recovery, and Children’s Foundation of America.

New students also attended informational meetings with their specific schools and divisions. This was followed by several breakout sessions as well as an afternoon resource fair featuring representatives from a variety of Claremont Colleges organizations as well as community businesses.

Several CGU-based organizations, including Advocates for Survivors of Sexual Violence, also set up information booths to field queries from new students.  (To learn more about the Advocates program, visit their home page on the university website here.)

Members of the Advocates for Survivors of Sexual Violence
Giving a voice to the voiceless: Members of the Advocates for Survivors of Sexual Violence provided much-needed information to students as well as the entire university community. Pictured (from left) are Applied Women’s Studies master’s student Annamae Sax, public health doctoral student Ami Bhatt, and public health doctoral student Brittany Lytle (the program’s organizer).

“You’re a part of CGU now, and you’re a part of making the CGU light shine brighter.”
–President Len Jessup

One of the day’s highlights took place early, as Easton invited the audience of new students to turn to their neighbors and help them don their CGU flame pins.

She reminded them that the program’s traditional “ignite the flame” pinning ceremony is an official sign of their new membership in the university’s academic community.

New CGU students Justin Hiltz and Katelyn Byker
DBOS student Katelyn Byker assists DPE student Justin Hiltz with his CGU flame pin during the pinning ceremony.

Like Easton, the program’s other speakers also celebrated the students’ membership in the university’s community. President Jessup, for instance, used the meaning of the university motto to make that point.

His remarks, which concluded with a playful quiz question—“so, do any of you know what our motto is?” he asked good-naturedly—reminded the audience hat they now belong to a university whose mission embraces the collective power of teamwork (as Steve Kim also remarked) in advancing knowledge and improving society.

“Our motto, ‘Multa lumina, lux una,’ means ‘many flames, one light,” he explained, as he prepared to leave the podium. “You’re a part of CGU now, and you’re a part of making the CGU light shine brighter.”