President-Designate Oxholm To Graduates: ‘We Are Proud to Call You Arcadia’

By Purnell T. Cropper | May 24, 2011

President-Designate Carl “Tobey” Oxholm III made surprise appearances at last week’s Undergraduate and Graduate Commencement ceremonies to introduce himself to the Arcadia community and congratulate the Class of 2011.

Flying in from California during the rainy weather, he made it just in time to address graduate students on Thursday, May 19. “You will be leaving this place … but you’re not leaving Arcadia. This is who you are, and we are who you are. And when you go anywhere in the world, you will end up doing … as well as you do thanks in large measure to the faculty who have been educating you here,” President-Designate Oxholm told the graduates. “You will be Arcadia, and we are proud to call you Arcadia.

“We want you to come back … and we want you to remember that it’s your time, your talent, you’re your treasure that will make this into the exceptional University in the world in terms of study abroad and bringing the richness of that world here. This has prepared you enormously well for a world that is far more integrated than when I went to grad school in the ’70s. Leave here with the confidence that you can face uncertainly, lack of definition, newness, change—because it’s coming at you every day—and these folks here prepared you for it. And as you do well in your careers, remember who made it possible for you to become who you are.”

At the Undergraduate Commencement on Friday, May 20, he gave a “shout out” to Abigail Gray, who was the Student Ambassador who gave him a tour of the campus when he visited (incognito) earlier this spring: “You gave a great tour. You made me decide to come.” He told the audience, “She’s a transfer student…. She transferred to come here because she knew how good it was. She really explained the enthusiasm she has for this place and all the richness of the world she’s been able to get from it in just the couple of years she was here…. You who have been here for four or five years know even more deeply how special Arcadia is.”