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IU Bloomington Honors Convocation

Monday, Mar. 26, 2023

IU President Whitten celebrates Indiana University students' commitment to academic excellence at the Honors Convocation. 


The role of milestones and landmarks 

The stories of the great journeys of history and literature are stories of triumph, success, courage, and perseverance in the face of obstacles.

These journeys often feature physical landmarks and milestones that help travelers understand their place and decide how to proceed. At IU Bloomington, beloved landmarks like the Sample Gates, Showalter Fountain, the Indiana Memorial Union, and Assembly Hall contribute to our sense of place and help us find our way. 

But certain journeys—like your journey through the academic year and your overall journey as an IU student—can include landmarks and milestones that are more symbolic.

Many of you gathered in Assembly Hall during your first week at IU for the Freshman Induction ceremony, one of the early milestones of the academic year. 

As students, midterms and final exams are significant milestones as you progress through the academic year… but so are beloved campus traditions that are, perhaps, a bit more enjoyable… like participating in IU Dance Marathon, taking part in Little 500, or cheering for our men’s and women’s basketball teams. 

Those near the end of your IU journeys will gather in Memorial Stadium in just a few weeks for your Commencement, a significant milestone of our academic year and a great cause for celebration.

Today’s ceremony, our annual Honors Convocation, is another favorite milestone of the academic year as we celebrate the academic success of undergraduate scholars who are among the most talented and ambitious Indiana University students.

You have earned university, national, and international honors through the dedicated application of your talents and sustained commitment to academic excellence.

I am so pleased to congratulate all of you on your remarkable achievements.

Qualities that build judgment and perspective

No matter what field you are studying, your educational journey at IU is not only giving you the knowledge and skills you will need to succeed, but it is also instilling in you the values and principles that will guide you in your career and in your life. 

IU’s schools seek to help you gain knowledge of a specific discipline and to practice critical thinking, curiosity about the world, and clear communication. During your time at IU, you are developing essential qualities such as creativity, openness to new experiences, improved judgment, and an enhanced sense of intellectual and ethical responsibilities.

These qualities will help you develop the judgment and perspective you need to effectively confront the complex problems of today’s—and tomorrow’s—world. 


You are, without question, enormously talented students, filled with the potential to make essential contributions to society.  Great opportunities lie before you.

I know that all of you will value your IU education and that you will go on to use it to accomplish great things. 

Congratulations again on all you have accomplished on your IU journey, and best wishes for continued success.

IU Bloomington Honors Convocation

Find out more about the third annual IU Bloomington Honors Convocation.