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Georgetown to New Students: Immerse Yourself in Values, Jesuit Call

AUGUST 25, 2014 – MARCIA CHATELAIN, ASSISTANT PROFESSOR of history in Georgetown College, told the more than 1,700 new and transfer students yesterday that they should “simply, fully and lovingly” become active members of the university community.

“Immerse yourself in our values, our traditions, our Jesuit call to be men and women for others,” said Chatelain, who represented the faculty at Georgetown’s New Student Convocation Sunday. “… The qualities that allow you to get the most out of Georgetown rest in your kindness towards each other, your richness of spirit and to the extent to which you desire to meet to the world’s challenges.”

The Georgetown professor created a hashtag on Twitter over the weekend to encourage educators to discuss Ferguson, Missouri, on the first day of class and share resources.


The ceremony officially inducts the Class of 2018 as students at Georgetown.

“You are joining an intellectual community that will demand the best of you, more than you ever thought you had in you,” said Georgetown Provost Robert Groves. “But while it will test every fiber in your character, it cares about you as a whole person – cura personalis.”

The Class of 2018 hails from all 50 states and 42 countries, including South Korea, China, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Canada, Brazil, Panama and France.

2014 McTighe Prize winner Hannah Schneider (C’15), a senior in Georgetown College majoring in Russian and minoring in government, delivered the student address.


Schneider encouraged incoming students to put aside concerns about getting a good job after graduation and instead contemplate “what the ‘good’ in good job and the ‘good’ in good life really means” during their undergraduate years.

“If you wrestle with these questions, that can lead you to destinations you would never have imagined,” said Schneider, who traveled through the North Caucasus region recording young classically trained musicians for Carnegie Hall’s exchange program. “Give yourself headaches thinking about those questions … because answering these questions now could change the course of your studies and your life.”

After the students donned their academic robes, Georgetown President John J. DeGioia welcomed them to the Georgetown community.

“This is a very special time in you lives, this is your time,” he said. “We are humbled by the trust placed in us by your families and we are hopeful for the lives you will touch, the dreams you will pursue and the impact you will have on this world in which we live in.”