Convocation speakers emphasize new beginnings for ULV

Abelina Nuñez
Social Media Editor

Niki Elliott, a clinical professor of education at the University of La Verne’s La Fetra College of Education, said this new school year, we get to decide how we show up. We can choose to make a difference or hold back and continue letting things occur. Elliott spoke at the 2021 Virtual Fall Convocation on Wednesday which was broadcast throughout the La Verne community via Webex. 

Convocations’ purpose is to welcome students, faculty, and staff to join the campus community to honor tradition and bring Leos together. 

“Good morning, fellow Leos, as the president of our university, I want to personally welcome you, students, faculty, staff, administrators, trustees, and alumni,” Devorah Lieberman, ULV president, said. “This is going to be a significant, marvelous, and a very, very successful year. Welcome to our beloved university, the University of La Verne.”

“This year, it truly feels like a new beginning as the campus is full again with students, faculty, and staff,” Kerop Janoyan, provost and vice president of academic affairs, said. “We have much to celebrate and be grateful for.”

Janoyan said he is very proud of the freshmen, especially those who had their first year virtual and are now on campus. He is excited to have everyone back in person and on campus this year, happy and healthy.

“One thing that we learn in life is sure that the Leo family is strong regardless if we are virtual or in person,” Janoyan said. “We have moved back to face-to-face class and activities now, and one thing that did not change throughout these uncertain times is that we are one community, and we will support one another and become stronger than before. Whether you are a first-year student or returning student, a member of our faculty, staff, or trustees or larger La Verne community, let me welcome you to our one community and say this is where you belong.”

Elliott said that this year is a new opportunity to continue to cultivate this space on campus.

“Remembering that it lies just beyond the rigid lines of duality and black-and-white thinking and so what I want to leave you here with today’s University of La Verne as we move forward and prepare to not intend to go back to normal but to create a new reality,” Elliott said.

“We can change the headlines within our hearts and minds of what we choose to focus on and promote to the community of what we stand for at the University of La Verne,” Elliott said.

Mackay MorganArmstrong, a junior kinesiology major and associate student of the University of La Verne president, said to take advantage of the opportunity to nurture campus culture involved in enthusiastic uplifting inclusiveness. 

MorganArmstrong believes we are part of history and proud to make it through the last 18 months dealing with loss, isolation, political and social turbulence, and a complete change of normal. 

“We are all vital parts of the Leo community, and I’m confident that we will make this year exceptional,” MorganArmstrong said. “There’s so much potential on this campus, and I’m so excited to see what we do with it.”

Abelina Nuñez can be reached at

Abelina J. Nuñez, senior journalism major, is a photography editor for Campus Times and staff photographer for La Verne Magazine. She previously served as LV Life editor, arts editor social media editor and staff writer. In Fall 2023, Nuñez was La Verne Magazine's editor-in-chief and was previously a staff writer as well. Her work can be found on Instagram @abelinajnunezphoto.

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