“Planning to Act” is theme for 2017 Convocation

“Planning to Act” is theme for 2017 Convocation

Aug. 25, 2017

“Planning to Act” is the title of the address that Maryville College President Tom Bogart will deliver to new and returning students, faculty and staff during the College’s 2017 Convocation ceremony, which is scheduled for Thurs., Aug. 31.

The ceremony, which marks the opening of the 2017-18 academic year, begins at 11:15 a.m. in the Clayton Center for the Arts’ Ronald and Lynda Nutt Theatre and is open to the public.

During his eighth Convocation as president of Maryville College, Bogart will use Luke 14: 25-33 to illustrate his chosen topic.

In his address, Bogart is expected to talk about the College’s upcoming strategic planning process.

“At Maryville College, we are especially concerned with educating people who will shape the future and who will be able to thrive regardless of what future unfolds,” the president explained. “Ironically, successful education contains the seeds of its own undoing, as new facts are uncovered, new theories are developed, and new techniques are invented. Therefore, we can never rest easy but must always look to improve, not because of any fault in what we are doing today, but because even the best approach today might no longer be best tomorrow.”

Several take part in the ceremony

The class of 2018, members of the Board of Directors, faculty and staff members and platform speakers will march in procession. Dr. John Gallagher, professor of management, will be the macebearer, and Dr. Jerilyn Swann, professor of biology and chair of the faculty, will welcome attendees to the ceremony.

J. Ashley Burell, adjunct instructor in organ and organist/choirmaster at St. James Episcopal Church in Knoxville, will perform the prelude and recessional.

Corrinne McClure ’18, a Bonner Scholar, Dean’s Scholar and Church and College Fellow, will offer the prayer of invocation. The College’s Statement of Purpose will be read by Beau Branton ’19, president of the Student Government Association.

“Unclouded Day,” arranged by Shawn Kirchner, will be performed by the Maryville College Concert Choir under the direction of Stacey Wilner, director of choral activities and lecturer in music.

The scripture reading will be read by Sarah Gregory ’18, a Presidential Scholar and MC Chapel Fellow. The Rev. Dr. Anne D. McKee, campus minister, will offer prayers for the College.

Dr. Barbara Wells, vice president and dean of the College, will give the declaration of the academic year and, following the singing of the Alma Mater, McKee will conclude with the benediction.

Classes are scheduled to begin Aug. 30.


Maryville College is ideally situated in Maryville, Tenn., between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Knoxville, the state's third largest city. Founded in 1819, it is the 12th oldest institution of higher learning in the South and maintains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church (USA). Known for offering its students a rigorous and highly personal experience that includes an undergraduate research requirement, Maryville College is a nationally ranked institution of higher learning that successfully joins the liberal arts and professional preparation. Total enrollment for the Fall 2017 semester is 1,181.