The 2017-2018 Wittenberg Series will begin with the annual Opening Convocation, the traditional kick-off of the new academic year, at 11:45 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 22, in historic Weaver Chapel. Wittenberg University’s new president, Dr. Michael L. Frandsen, will present the keynote address titled “First Things First.”
Respected for his authenticity, integrity, vision, exemplary leadership skills and unique ability for finding intersections that create opportunity, Frandsen was named Wittenberg's 15th president on Feb. 10, 2017. He began his tenure on July 1, 2017.
The unanimous choice of the Wittenberg University Board of Directors, Frandsen brings a breadth and depth of experience to Wittenberg’s highest post having spent more than 10 years in corporate finance before pursuing his current 18-year career in higher education as both a professor and senior-level administrator, including serving as interim president of Albion College from 2013-2014 and most recently as vice president of finance and administration at Oberlin College.
A native of State College, Pa., Frandsen earned his B.A. in finance with distinction and his M.B.A. in quantitative business analysis with honors from The Pennsylvania State University, and his Ph.D. in management from the University of Texas at Austin.
He and wife, Sharon, are the proud parents of two grown daughters, Janie, a doctoral student at The Ohio State University, and Kate, who will graduate from Albion College later this fall.
Frandsen’s inauguration has been scheduled for Thursday, April 5, 2018, as a lead-in event for Wittenberg’s annual Celebration of Learning and Honors Convocation. Additional events highlighting Wittenberg’s tradition of excellence in the arts and athletics are also expected to round out the celebratory week next spring.
Now in its 35th year, the Wittenberg Series brings distinguished lecturers and performing artists of national and international prominence to the Wittenberg campus and Springfield community. To make special arrangements, request a Series poster, or become a friend of the Wittenberg Series, contact Lisa Watson at WatsonL4@wittenberg.edu. All Wittenberg Series events are free and open to the public.
Additional 2017-2018 Wittenberg Series Events:
- Monday, Sept. 25: Concert with Seraph Brass, 7:30 p.m., Weaver Chapel.
- Wednesday, Oct. 25: Kenneth H. Sauer Luther Symposium, 7:30 p.m., Bayley Auditorium featuring Dr. Joy Schroeder, Trinity Lutheran Seminary. Q & A, 3:30 p.m., Weaver Chapel.
- Sunday, Oct. 29: Reformation Service, 7:30 p.m. in Weaver Chapel (music begins at 7 p.m.).
- Monday, Oct. 30: Fred R. Leventhal Family Lecture, 7:30 p.m., Pam Evans Smith Arena featuring New York Times best-selling author, JD Vance.
- Tuesday, Nov. 14: Allen J. Koppenhaver Literary Lecture, 7:30 p.m., Bayley Auditorium featuring Iraqi poet Dunya Mikhail. Colloquium, 4:30 p.m., Bayley Auditorium.
- Friday, Dec. 8: Lessons and Carols, 7:30 p.m. (Pre-service at 7 p.m.), Weaver Chapel.
- Monday, Jan. 15, 2018: Martin Luther King, Jr. Convocation, 11:15 a.m., Weaver Chapel, featuring Bernadette Evans '89, community activist and author. Q & A, 3:30 p.m., 105 Joseph C. Shouvlin Center for Lifelong Learning.
- Monday & Tuesday, Feb. 5-6, 2018: Visual Arts Residency, 7:30 p.m., Springfield City School District's John Legend Theater at The Dome with documentary filmmaker, Elisabeth Haviland James. In celebration of Black History Month, there will be screenings of the films Althea (Monday) and The Loving Story (Tuesday).
- Wednesday, March 21, 2018: IBM Endowed Lecture in the Sciences, 7:30 p.m., Bayley Auditorium featuring evolutionary biologist Dr. Sean B. Carroll. Colloquium, 4 p.m., Bayley Auditorium.
- Friday, March 26, 2018: William A. Kinnison Endowed Lecture, 7:30 p.m., Weaver Chapel, featuring Annette Gordon-Reed, Charles Warren Professor of American Legal History at Harvard University and Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family.
For more information on the Wittenberg Series, click here.