The College of Staten Island honored its top students at the Eighth Annual Honors Convocation at the Center for the Arts Springer Concert Hall.
Lucinda Zawadzki, the CSI Class of 2015 Salutatorian and graduate from the Macaulay Honors College: University Scholars Program at CSI, was the student speaker at the event.
Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. A. Ramona Brown, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Fred Naider, and CSI President Dr. William J. Fritz, also brought remarks.
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President Fritz began by asking the honorees to stand and “be duly recognized for your achievements.” Once the applause subsided, President Fritz shared his pride to be “standing here before our highest-achieving students.” He then discussed his reasons for which the students were being honored—that the College was proudly celebrating “your intellect, your drive to succeed, and your dedication to service.”
Furthering a trend that he began two years ago at the Honors Convocation, President Fritz referred to comments made by 2014 Salutatorian, Elizabeth Krawczun, saying, “As we go forward, we must take our scholarship, ambition, character, heart, and spirit to make good art—programming software, pumping gas, preparing a good meal, telling a funny joke—Make good art,” he told the attendees.
“For Elizabeth,” he continued, “making good art meant creating something of value, of meaning, of importance—it meant doing the extraordinary, if not the impossible—it meant changing the world. So to the mazing students here to be honored, whether your discipline is within the creative arts, humanities, sciences, or social sciences, within business, education, or health sciences; tonight in deference to Elizabeth, let us all share a common bond.”
President Fritz concluded his address by telling the attendees, “Tonight let us all be artists, let us share something of ourselves, and let us make good art.”
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t9WAIy35rxQ[/youtube]Zawadzki, who is graduating Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s degree in Biology, and a double minor in Biochemistry and Chemistry, also earned the Biology Department Faculty Award for Academic Excellence.
During her remarks, she acknowledged “Many of us are afraid of the future. I know I still am. But I’ve learned that you shouldn’t let that fear stop you, and you definitely shouldn’t let it guide you,” adding “none of us know what will happen down the road, so just try finding what you are truly passionate about and give it your all.”
“Remember, there is nothing in this world that can limit you,” Zawadzki concluded. “We define our own limits, but the world knows no bounds. So let go. Go with the flow. Take it all in. Strive for greatness.”
Following the ceremony, the honored students, their families and friends, and staff attended a dessert reception in the Center for the Arts Atrium where they were able to celebrate their accomplishments at CSI.