Week of events to mark Lawrence inauguration

Symposia and entertainment events bracket investiture ceremony

Photos/Mike Lovett

Activities ranging from in-depth discussions of the global liberal arts university to a light-hearted evening of swing dancing and a classical concert have been organized to celebrate the inauguration of Fred Lawrence as the eighth president of Brandeis University.

The investiture is scheduled for Thursday, March 31, beginning at 2 p.m. in Gosman Sports and Convocation Center. [Inaugural website]

The ceremony will feature welcomes to the new president from representatives of the trustees, faculty, alumni, students, friends of the university and other groups, performances by current and former students and an address by President Lawrence. It will be followed by a reception, also in Gosman.

The inaugural week begins on Saturday, March 26, with a concert that also celebrates 30 years of the Lydian String Quartet. The Lydians, who are professors of the practice of music at Brandeis, have received worldwide critical acclaim for their interpretive mastery of such traditional repertoire as Haydn, Schubert, Beethoven and Ravel and their special flair for contemporary music.

Only a few tickets remain for the Saturday concert, which will be at 8 p.m. in Slosberg Music Center.

Monday, March 28, and Tuesday, March 29, will be devoted to deep thinking about the university's future in an increasingly globalized environment. Michael Sandel '75 and Judith Shapiro ‘63 each will moderate two panels of Brandeis faculty considering various aspects of global issues. All these discussions will be in the Faculty Center, better known as the Faculty club. Programs run from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. on both days.

On March 28, Shapiro, a distinguished anthropologist who served as president of Barnard College and provost of Bryn Mawr College, will moderate panels on relationships between the university and the corporate and political worlds and on nurturing creativity in the arts, the sciences and  scholarship generally.

On March 29, Sandel, the Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Government at Harvard and teacher of a highly acclaimed course on justice there, will moderate discussions about the effects of globalization on the traditional liberal arts curriculum and on the meaning of a social justice mission at a global liberal arts university.

The inauguration ceremony, in Gosman on March 31, will begin with the singing of "America" by Professor of Theater Arts Nancy Armstrong and an invocation delivered by Rabbi William Hamilton of Congregation Kehillath Israel in Brookline.  Music will be provided by the Brandeis-Wellesley Orchestra, the Brandeis University Chorus and J. Bernard Calloway MFA '00, who is currently appearing on Broadway in "Memphis."  Trustees Chair Malcolm L. Sherman will present Lawrence with the medallion and chain of office and the charter of the university.

Alumni and faculty may register for this event online. Students and staff need not register, but must have tickets to enter the building. Tickets are available at the Shapiro Campus Center box office from noon to 6 p.m. through Friday, March 25.

Temporary parking changes will be in place for the inauguration.

The Gosman front parking lot will be closed from 11 p.m. on Wednesday, March 30, until 6 p.m. on Thursday, March 31. Parking spaces adjacent to and across from the tennis courts will also be closed. Students who normally park in the front lot and tennis court spaces may park at 1022 Main Street, the former site of Waltham Ford, across from the Bank of America building. Parking monitors and public safety personnel will be present to provide assistance. Shuttle buses will be in operation from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.  March 31, and will make stops in front of Usdan Student Center and on the peripheral road in front of Spingold Theater Center.

The week concludes with a ball from 8:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. on Saturday evening, April 2, celebrating the diversity of talents and heritages in the Brandeis community. The event is semiformal, and guests are encouraged to wear attire from their cultures.

Music will be provided by the White Heat Swing Orchestra, one of the hottest swing bands in the country today, and by DJ Marcos and DJ Sensation, two of Brandeis' hottest student DJs.

The ball will be in Shapiro Gym in the Gosman center. It is free and open to all members of the Brandeis community but tickets are required. These may be obtained at the Shapiro Campus Center box office until March 25. Individuals who show their Brandeis I.D. may receive two tickets.

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