Filling the shady grass and walkways of the Hub, the 3,864 members of Miami University’s class of 2021 were welcomed by President Greg Crawford during Convocation 2017 last Friday morning.

The class of 2021 was chosen from an applicant pool of over 30,255 students with an average ACT score of 28.3. Over half of the students come from Ohio while the rest span 43 states and 18 countries.

The current first-year class is the most diverse class in Miami’s 208-year history with 16.9 percent of domestic students of color. Additionally, 8.4 percent of students are international and 15.2 percent on first-generation college students.

“Miami’s ability to attract this number of such accomplished and diverse students speaks to the national and global reputation of a Miami degree,” said Susan Schaurer, assistant vice president for enrollment management and student success and director of admission in a press release.

To help acclimate the incoming class into college life, the campus and the Oxford community, the university introduced the First 50 Days program, including more than 350 events.

At Convocation 2017, President Crawford highlighted the importance of diversity on campus.  

“We seek ways to engage diversity in the classroom, in the library, in the laboratory, in the speakers we invite to campus and in the special events we host,” President Crawford said.

The keynote speaker of convocation was Stephen T. Williams, mayor of Huntington, West Virginia, named “America’s Best Community.”

Williams spoke of his experience revitalizing the community of Huntington through the Huntington Innovation Project which completely transformed the town. He also talked about the struggle of combatting issues similar to those addressed in Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance which was the required summer reading book for incoming first-years.

Student body president Maggie Callahan, Renate Crawford and Oxford mayor Kate Rousmaniere were also featured speakers at Convocation.

“My advice to you is to foster personal relationships with fellow students who broaden your perspective,” President Crawford said. “When we include others, we are included. When we welcome others, we are welcomed. When we listen to others, we are heard. Welcome class of 2021 to the Miami family where you are included and heard.”