As the nation begins a new academic year, there are many first-year students eager to begin their time at a university or college. 436 of these first-year students and their families attended the annual Convocation Ceremony at Misericordia University on Thursday, August 24.
During the convocation ceremony the Alumni Association presented Dr. Tariq Adwan with the Young Alumnus Award. The award is presented to an alumni who has graduated in the past decade with “outstanding professional achievements and/or community or civic service.”
Dr. Adwan’s address to the new students of Misericordia spoke of what is necessary in order to be a young person who will make a positive impact in the world. He shared his experience of being the only Muslim student on campus during 9/11 and how he initially feared how his fellow students would react to him. Much to his surprise, the response of his fellow students was quite the opposite of what he initially expected. He and his peers stood in solidarity with the victims and families of the attack. It was at that moment when he realized “changing the world was possible, but that he needed people to do it with.”
He called on the incoming Class of 2021 to share their story and embrace as many people and cultures as this is necessary when striving to change the world. “It is then that we become less threatened and more welcoming of the stranger. For we, once upon a time, were the strangers.”
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