19th President, 2011-2022

Inauguration Events, October 2011


Watch video of the inauguration ceremony.

Watch video of the panel, “At the Heart of the Liberal Arts.”

Watch videos of the student performances.

Watch an interview with Biddy Martin.

Read “A Conversation with the 19th President” in Amherst magazine.

Read “Introducing the 19th President of Amherst College.

See the list of academic delegates.

See more photos on flickr.


Saturday, October 15, 2011

11:30 AM to 1:30 PM • Luncheon
Valentine Quadrangle. Featuring performances by student groups, including a cappella singers, jazz bands, string ensembles, dancers and martial artists. 

2 PM • Inauguration Panel: “At the Heart of the Liberal Arts.”
Stirn Auditorium. Moderated by Amherst College trustee Andrew J. Nussbaum ’85.

Watch video

  • “What Artists, Humanists and Scientists Actually Do.” Don Randel, president of the Mellon Foundation, former president of the University of Chicago and, prior to that, provost at Cornell University. Randel, a distinguished musicologist, will talk about the liberal arts—specifically the connections between the humanities, social sciences and sciences. Dr. Randel will be introduced by Mark Marshall, the Class of 1959 Professor of Chemistry.
  • “The Opportunity for Equality.” David Harris, senior associate dean in the College of Arts and Sciences at Cornell University. Harris had previously served as deputy provost and interim provost at Cornell, and, after a stint in the Obama administration, has returned to the university. He is a sociologist whose work relates to racial and economic inequality. Professor Harris will be introduced by Rhonda Cobham-Sander, William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Black Studies and English and chair of the English Department.
  • “The Liberal Arts and Civil Society.” Isabel Hull, the John Stambaugh Professor of History at Cornell University. Hull, a historian with a focus on Germany, has written many articles and three major books: one on the personal relations that informed the political history of the Kaisserreich, one on the history of sexuality in Germany and one on German colonial rule and violence in Southeast Africa. Her current research is on World War I. Her talk will address the importance of the liberal arts and intellectual life more generally. Professor Hull will be introduced by Hilary Moss, Associate Professor of Black Studies and History.

9 PM • Student Inaugural Fête
Keefe Campus Center. Music and lights provided by Cloud Nine Productions. Cider, hors d’oeuvres and gifts provided.

9:45 PM • President Biddy Martin Speaks to Students
Keefe Campus Center.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

10 am • Inauguration Ceremony

Watch video

Opening of the Ceremony
Robert Garvey, sheriff of Hampshire County

The National Anthem
Amherst College Choral Society, Mallorie Chernin, director

Gregory S. Call, dean of the faculty, Peter R. Pouncey Professor of Mathematics

Greetings From the Faculty
Wako Tawa, faculty marshal, professor of Asian languages and civilizations

Awarding of Honorary Master’s Degree
Gregory S. Call and Wako Tawa

From the Colleges and Universities—G. Peter Lepage, professor of Physics and Harold Tanner Dean, College of Arts and Sciences, Cornell University
From Doshisha University—Yasuhiro Kuroki, professor, Department of Social Welfare, Faculty of Social Studies, former Vice President of International Affairs
From Five Colleges, Inc.—Carol T. Christ, president, Smith College
From the Town of Amherst—James Wald, member of the Select Board
From Amherst-Pelham Regional Schools—Maria Geryk Superintendent

“Three Gifts”

From Students—Romen Borsellino ’12, president, Association of Amherst Students
From Staff—Suzette Farnham, chair of the Employee Council, academic coordinator, Department of Music
From Alumni—Kelly Close ’90, chair of the Executive Committee of the Alumni Council
From the Folger Shakespeare Library—Michael Witmore, director

“Altitudes,” by Richard Wilbur ’42, John Woodruff Simpson Lecturer

Inauguration of the President
Jide J. Zeitlin ’85, chair, Board of Trustees

“Fanfare,” by Eric Sawyer, associate professor of music

Inaugural Address
Carolyn “Biddy” Martin

“Hymn to Amherst”

Closing of the Ceremony
Robert Garvey

11:30 AM - 1:30 pm • Luncheon

Featuring performances by student groups, including a cappella singers, jazz bands, string groups, dancers and martial artists.

Watch videos