Mid-way through the event, three deans shared their thoughts on the academic journey of the past year. Tim Pyatt, Dean of the Z. Smith Reynolds Library, offered a kind introduction and expressed excitement for the future of our amazing library. Charles Iacovou, Dean of the Business School, reflected on the achievements and sacrifices Wake Forest students have endured to earn the Dean’s List designation. Finally, Michele Gillespie, Dean of the College, gave an inspiring speech tailored to each class. Among the advice was a charge to dive into divisional courses, embracing the interdisciplinary richness of the liberal arts education, and to practice intentionality by encouraging younger students to consider selecting one major, rather than double majoring by merely sufficing requirements.
True to the nature of the event, a lesson emerged from the Gala: it takes both traditional faculty and librarians not just to ensure academic success, but to celebrate it! This year’s Gala featured a broad array of Demon Deacons, including the largest number of faculty in attendance since the event’s inception. We established a wonderful precedent which we hope to continue going forward.
All in all, approximately 300 students, faculty, staff, friends, and administrators gathered in the Atrium to celebrate the achievement of Wake Forest students. Dim lights and cocktail tables were a welcome change as we demonstrated the beauty and utility of this magnificent space.
The 2016 Dean’s List Gala Planning Committee consisted of Mary Beth Lock, Nia Evans, Tom Phillips, and Peyton Barr. The committee wants to thank Deans Iacovou, Gillespie, and Pyatt for facilitating the event, as well as all the ZSR volunteers who made the event flow seamlessly.