Processionals, speeches, robes, and regalia. The rituals of presidential inaugurations are steeped in history and tradition, bringing with them a warranted opportunity to reexamine an institution’s past and its goals for the future. President Christian’s inauguration—New Paltz’s eighth presidential inauguration in its 184-year history—will serve to honor and induct a new leader, affirm our commitment to academic excellence and innovation, and define our direction for the years to come.
The ceremony will begin with a procession of the college’s senior administrators, deans from the various academic disciplines, members of the SUNY New Paltz College Council and the SUNY New Paltz Foundation, faculty, staff, students, and alumni; the Chancellor of the SUNY System and three Vice Chancellors; three members of the SUNY Board of Trustees, including Chairman Carl McCall; state officials; and delegates from local and out-of-state colleges and universities. The processional will be led by Professor Alex Bartholomew (Geology) playing the bagpipes, followed by Procession Marshal David Dugatkin, chief of university police, several international students carrying the flags of their nations, and student athletes carrying the various school banners. Grand Marshal Nancy Nielson will lead the Platform Party.
SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher will preside over the ceremony, during which Dr. Christian will be presented with the President’s chain. He will then deliver his inauguration speech, in which he will discuss the future of the college and its mission as a leading, liberal arts-based public comprehensive college, focused on teaching and learning, that serves as a vital partner in the region.
It’s an exciting time at New Paltz, as President Christian takes on his new role and sets forth his vision for New Paltz. It’s also an opportunity to be reminded of the institutional mission and recognize the rich history of the pedagogical tradition at New Paltz.