Free tickets are now available for Montana State University's Convocation 2017 set for Aug. 24 featuring Bryan Stevenson, an author and social justice activist who is called “the Nelson Mandela of America.”
Stevenson is the author of the best-selling book “Just Mercy,” which is MSU’s 2017 Freshman Reading Book. He will speak to MSU's students about “taking the higher ground” during the event, which is set for 7:30 p.m. in MSU's Brick Breeden Fieldhouse. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m.
David Singel, MSU’s associate provost in charge of academic affairs, said MSU has timed this year’s convocation a week earlier than usual to allow parents and family members dropping off students to participate in the landmark event for incoming students. The early release of tickets likewise enables families in Bozeman for orientation to acquire tickets while on campus.
“Bryan Stevenson is one of the most brilliant and influential young change-makers of our time,” Singel said. “His story recounts his commitment to take the higher ground in fighting for those who seem beyond hope and challenges readers to do more with their lives. It sends an inspiring message to our new students.”
Stevenson is a public interest lawyer who is the founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama. He is known for his work to help the poor, the incarcerated and the condemned. The Equal Justice Initiative has won legal challenges eliminating excessive and unfair sentencing, exonerating innocent death row prisoners, confronting abuse of the incarcerated and the mentally ill and aiding children prosecuted as adults.
MSU President Waded Cruzado said that Stevenson’s message that it is the responsibility of all to combat injustice will be inspiring to everyone who attends the annual event.
“Stevenson is an eloquent messenger who reminds us that we all bear the responsibility to fight injustice in our world and in our times,” Cruzado said. “This message will be a powerful inspiration to our incoming students as they begin to shape their destiny and plan studies to support their life’s goals. We welcome all members of the community to join us at this event.”
Convocation tickets are available at all Bobcat ticket outlets including: the Bobcat Ticket Office, Rosauers, the AskUs Desk at the SUB, by calling 994-CATS or (800) 325-7328 and online at www.ticketswest.com. While the tickets are free, there is a small handling charge for tickets ordered over the phone, online or at Rosauers. There will be a limit of four tickets per person and organizers say about 2,000 tickets will be available to the public. Tickets for large groups of people are available for a small fee. More information is available at the Bobcat Ticket Office.
Members of MSU's freshman class have reserved seats and will not need tickets to attend the lecture. All other students may use any of the ticket outlets to access tickets. At the time they request tickets, MSU faculty and staff may request tickets located in an area designated for MSU faculty and staff by visiting the Bobcat Ticket Office or calling 994-CATS.
In addition, Stevenson will teach a master class for MSU students the afternoon of Aug. 24, which allows students the opportunity to interact with the author in a personalized, smaller group setting. Students are asked to read “Just Mercy” in preparation for the discussion. All MSU students are welcome to apply for the master class at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/BStevensonClass. The application deadline is Aug. 15.
More information about Stevenson can be found through the MSU Library Guide to Convocation.
Stevenson’s visit to MSU is sponsored by the MSU Office of the President and the Office of the Provost. ASMSU, the MSU Leadership Institute and the MSU Alumni Foundation have provided additional sponsorship for the event. For more information, go to http://www.montana.edu/convocation/.
David Singel (406) 994-4371, firstname.lastname@example.org