Opening Convocation Inspires Students

Bridgewater Unveils New Logo and Beginning

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Photo by Holden Andrews

English professor Scott Suter gives the First Lecture to the freshman class of 2023.

Holden Andrews, Editor-In-Chief

Bridgewater, Va. – Monday, Aug. 26, Bridgewater College held the inaugural opening convocation for the freshman class of 2023. Professor of English Scott Suter gave this year’s First Lecture, titled Which Way the Wind Blows. Held in Nininger Gym, the convocation began with junior and Student Senate President McKenzie Melvin greeting the new students, then Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Leona Sevick welcomed Suter to the stage. 

Suter started his lecture by talking about how there are many things in this world that people do not know–that there are numerous questions that remain unanswered, even after centuries of research and exploration. Since there are so many unanswered questions and even more questions with more than one answer, the English professor said people must use their imagination and personal knowledge to fill in the blanks.  

While speaking with other Bridgwater Faculty, one question Suter said has a constant answer is gravity. According to the professor, any other question has multiple answers and, therefore, is open to interpretation. 

“Questioning what you know is, I believe, where adventure and learning begin,” said Suter, paraphrasing the poet Walt Whitman and speaking of his pursuit of knowledge. The professor used a poem by Whitman about grass and a definition of grass from the dictionary to show there are many different ways to describe something.

Suter implored the audience to always start with a question and remember there will be numerous answers to what they are looking for. Ending his lecture with a quotation from SpongeBob SquarePants, Suter implored the audience to use their imagination and go into the new school year with a mindset to do their best work. 

“Regardless of your major, even though you may think you know which way the wind blows, remember to consider all the possibilities that your imagination offers you.” 

Bridgewater College President David Bushman addressed the audience after Suter. Bushman introduced the new brand identity for the college, citing the ever-changing world and student body as the main catalysts for change. He said the three words new students will start to hear continuously are “connect, engage and belong.”

“Our new brand identity enhances how BC presents itself to the greater community, to ourselves and it articulates what makes a Bridgewater education this experience distinctive for each of us.”

Bushman talked about how the new brand and new logo was designed to connect Bridgewater students with each other, with their professors and with the community. He said these connections will help the students in their professional lives and enhance their overall experience at Bridgewater.

“The connected B and C in our new logo represents our commitment to building these connections.”

As Suter talked about the pursuit of knowledge, Bushman ended his remarks by talking about the pursuit of truth, saying, “Students, worry less about the possession of truth and worry more about the pursuit of it.”

 

Photo by Holden Andrews
Bridgewater seniors Michael Caldwell, Eli Quay, and Matthew Althaver walk through the echelon of Bridgewater professors and staff.