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ISSUE 117 VOL 19 PUBLISHED 5/14/2004

Excellence acknowledged

By Aaron Johansen
Staff Writer

Friday, May 14, 2004

On Friday, May 7, students, parents and faculty gathered together in Boe Memorial Chapel for the annual Honors Day Celebration. When classes let out 15 minutes early on Friday, a large number of students walked down to the chapel for the ceremony. Parents from near and far traveled to campus to be with their children as St. Olaf rewarded students who demonstrated academic prowess this past school year. All students who had a 3.3 GPA or higher, were awarded special honors, or were part of a senior honor society received invitations to the event. The audience applauded the hardworking students during the announcement of awards. The senior Phi Beta Kappa members, Fulbright Scholars, St. Olafs seventh Rhodes Scholar, Decker F. Walker, Jr, recipients of subject honors and recipients of general honors were acknowledged. Special mention was given to those who were awarded endowed scholarships, and recognition was also given to those who donated money for these scholarships. William Carlson, a retiring professor of economics, gave the Honors Day keynote address on "Globalization, the St. Olaf Opportunity." Carlson said that in the world today, where a very small minority holds the vast majority of the worlds wealth and resources, it is the duty of each and every advantaged person to look beyond themselves to help those in need. He believes that conditions have improved through open trading and technology such as containerized shipping managed by computers, but these few things are not enough by themselves. Carlson said that education is necessary for making a network of trade, expansion, commercialism and improved health/aid work throughout the world. "Aid resources are wasted without an educated base," he said. "If you give a man a meal, he wont be hungry. If you educate a woman, shell be prepared for the world, but she may also take your job." Carlson also said that nations who have educated both men and women throughout the world have proven to be more productive than those who have not. In his closing, Carlson challenged the St. Olaf faculty to make aid and education around the world possible in thirty years. After a closing statement from President Christopher Thomforde, attendees left Boe Memorial Chapel to head over to a special reception near Buntrock Commons. In the less formal setting, Ben Heidgerken '07 offered this thoughts on the professors' robes. "Its humorous to see all those professors we know and love dressed up in their funny costumes," he said. Regarding the donors who were present as well, Emily Strand '05 said, "It was great meeting the people who make my education possible." Fridays Honors Day ceremony served as the kickoff to several events over the weekend aimed at bringing together a large portion of the St. Olaf community. Many parents stayed for other weekend activities such as the Science Symposium, Lutefest and Mothers Day. Seniors are facing the end of their St. Olaf careers, and this event was a last chance to award their hard work. Even underclassmen recognized the importance of this event for those who will not be returning to campus in the fall. "The ceremony was interesting and well run, and it was especially nice to be able to honor the seniors who will soon be leaving," Lauren Cassat 07 said. Honors Day was a great opportunity to reflect on many of the past years academic achievements.

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