Media Relations

Press Release:

561-297-3022, or
Andrew LaPlant

FAU to Celebrate Inaugural Freshman Convocation

            BOCA RATON , FL (August 23, 2007) – More than 2,400 freshmen students have been invited to the inaugural Florida Atlantic University Freshman Convocation on Sunday, August 26.  The ceremony is scheduled for 1 p.m. in the Carole and Barry Kaye Performing Arts Auditorium, 777 Glades Road.   With the introduction of this annual event, FAU becomes part of a long tradition among American universities to welcome incoming freshmen in a ceremonial setting. The formality of the Freshman Convocation serves to underscore the important transition that is taking place in their lives and to extend the support of the university community to its newest members. This year’s Freshman Convocation will feature keynote speaker and book author Susan Orlean.  

During this past summer, freshmen were asked to read The Orchid Thief by Orlean as part of the Freshman Reading Program.   The program consisted of the reading andparticipation in an online discussion group, where students could ask questions and learn about the book from their fellow peers.   These new students will now be able to meet each other, as well as faculty and staff members of the University as part of convocation.

Susan Orlean’s book The Orchid Thief has been made into a movie, Adaptation, written by Charlie Kaufman and directed by Spike Jonze.   The book is a narrative about orchid poachers in Florida and made The New York Times bestseller list.  Currently, Orlean writes for The New Yorker and lectures across the country.

“We are very excited about creating this new tradition at FAU,” said Mary Ann Gosser-Esquilin, special assistant to the provost and coordinator of the event.   “We are hoping this will make for an easier transition for the freshmen students, since many of them know each other from the online discussion group over the summer.”

For more information regarding FAU’s inaugural Freshman Convocation, contact Andrew LaPlant at 561-297-0884 or  


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