The Ohio State University at Newark Welcomes Students at Convocation

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International Bestselling Author, Liz Murray, Shares Story of Triumph over Adversity

Liz Murray, Ohio State Newark Convocation speaker and international bestselling author

Murray encouraged students to ask the question, “What if?” and give life the meaning they desire no matter the circumstances. “No on truly knows what is possible until they go and do it,”

First-year students received an official welcome to The Ohio State University at Newark during convocation on August 26, 2014, the day before autumn semester classes started. Over 500 students filled the Alford Performing Arts Hall in the John Gilbert Reese Center to hear international bestseller, Liz Murray.

Murray delivered a personal account of her life story to the crowded auditorium, touching on themes of responsibility, possibility and forgiveness. She encouraged students to ask the question, “What if?” and give life the meaning they desire no matter the circumstances. “No on truly knows what is possible until they go and do it,” she said.

Murray has personal experience in triumph over adversity. Her life story is played out on screen in Lifetime Television’s 2003 movie, “From Homeless to Harvard.” A child of drug-addicted parents who became homeless at 15, Murray rose from the darkness to complete high school in just two years while sleeping in subway cars and on park benches.

Murray received a B.S. in Psychology from Harvard University in 2009. Her memoir, “Breaking Night,” was published in 2010 and became a bestseller within a week. She is the recipient of Oprah Winfrey’s first ever Chutzpah Award.

Dean/Director William L. MacDonald, Ph.D. also greeted students. He gave the first homework assignment of the year, challenging students to be engaged inside and outside of the classroom on their path to becoming fully engaged citizens upon graduation.

“To be a part of Ohio State means to be engaged in The Ohio State University endeavor to seek knowledge and use that knowledge to make the world a better place,” he said.

Other speakers included Holly Mason, Interim Director of Student Life; Jessica Dillow, fifth-year student; and Melissa Jungers, Ph.D., Associate Dean, who led the audience in singing Ohio State’s alma mater, “Carmen, Ohio.”

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René N. White

Andy Ellinger
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