UT Dallas Convocation - Education and Technology: The Crossroads The Office of Undergraduate Education

University Convocation

University Convocation, the first step in a student's academic journey at UT Dallas, is the official welcome for all incoming freshmen and transfer students. The 2013 University Convocation ceremony is on Sunday, August 25, 2013, at 4:00pm in the Activity Center gymnasium. If you are a faculty member, student leader, or staff member, please gather outside the racquetball courts at 3:30pm to participate in the processional. Incoming freshmen and transfer students will sit in the stands of the Activity Center gymnasium.

The 2013 University Convocation ceremony will formally initiate the "Education and Technology: The Crossroads" theme for the 2013-2014 academic year. The objective of this theme is to challenge students to critically analyze their personal and academic goals, in recognition of the ways that technology has changed the way future leaders will address societal problems. The University Convocation ceremony, required summer TED Talk lectures, Student Life activities and the UNIV 1010 freshman seminar course will promote innovation and emphasize the ever-increasing role of technology in educational and professional environments, as well as our everyday lives. Students will learn how to develop values and skills, such as integrity and communication, both of which have proven to be pillars of success in pre-industrial and technologically advanced societies.

Convocation Featured Videos
Education and Technology: The Crossroads

Incoming freshmen are encouraged to view the videos below before the University Convocation ceremony:


3D Printers in Medicine

Focus: Medicine

Hire Hackers

Focus: Social Justice

The Art of Asking - Crowd Sourcing

Focus: Finance and Entrepreneurship

My Invention that Made Peace with the Lions

Focus: Ingenuity and Science

Talk Nerdy to Me

Focus: Communication

A Thousand Times No

Focus: War and Art

Fall 2013 Convocation Keynote Speaker

Dr. Steven Mintz

The keynote speaker for the Fall 2013 University Convocation is Dr. Steven Mintz, executive director of The University of Texas System's Institute for Transformational Learning. A pioneer in the application of new technologies to teaching and research, Steven Mintz came to The University of Texas System from Columbia University, where he was a professor of history and director of the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences Teaching Center.

A former fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford, he has taught at Oberlin College, the University of Houston, Harvard University's Extension School, Pepperdine University, and Universitat-GH-Siegen.

A leading authority on the history of families and children, he is the author and editor of 13 books, including Huck's Raft: A History of American Childhood, which received major prizes from the Association of American Publishers, the Organization of American Historians, and the Texas Institute of Letters. He has also served as president of the Society for the History of Children and Youth, and chaired the Council on Contemporary Families, an organization of leading academics and clinicians committed to improving the public conversation on families and their needs.

A past president of H-Net: Humanities and Social Sciences Online, which serves over 200,000 academics world-wide, he is also the creator of the Digital History website, which is used by 150,000 teachers and students a week. Digital History been named one of the Top 5 sites in U.S. history and been placed on the National Endowment for the Humanities EdSitement list of exemplary online resources in the humanities.

In addition to playing an active role in the professional development of K-12 teachers and in programs to bring students from historically underrepresented groups into the professoriate, he was recently inducted into the Society of American Historians, whose membership is limited to 250 scholars and professional writers of history chosen on the basis of literary distinction. He has also chaired the Bancroft Prize and Frederick Douglass Book Prize juries, and received over $12 million in external funding, including two National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grants. He frequently appears on public radio and in The New York Times, USA Today, and the Washington Post.

Convocation Attire

Faculty should dress in formal regalia. Incoming students should wear the UT Dallas University Convocation t-shirts that were distributed during the summer orientation sessions. The University Convocation t-shirt serves as the meal ticket for incoming students at the welcome barbecue after the ceremony. Student leaders and staff should dress in seasonally appropriate business casual attire.

Post Convocation Celebration

After University Convocation, faculty, staff, and upperclassmen gather to welcome incoming students to the University community. Students should process out of the Activity Center to the center of the mall for a barbecue sponsored by Student Affairs.

University Convocation RSVP

Faculty, staff, and student leaders should notify the Office of Undergraduate Education regarding their intent to attend using the University Convocation RSVP Form.