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Belmont University | Belief in Something Greater

Overview

Vision & Mission

The Vision of Belmont's Convocation program is to be a common and shared experience that encourages the development of well-rounded individuals. Convocation reinforces Belmont's unique statement of purpose in providing "an academically challenging education in a Christian community." The program's history dates back to the former chapel program in which students were required to attend weekly services. In order to meet the needs of our changing student population and to create a broader learning experience, Belmont created the Convocation program.

Our Mission is to:

  • Encourage learning outside the classroom
  • Emphasize the value of life-long learning
  • Create opportunities for students to hear exciting issues presented by speakers from both on and off-campus
  • Challenge students to be active in serving their community
  • Contribute to community life at Belmont University

An Economy of Engagement
Belmont enjoys a uniquely engaging campus community with a wide variety of opportunities to connect socially, intellectually, and spiritually both inside and outside the classroom. The University’s Convocation Program plays an important part in creating this environment. As a requirement for graduation for all full-time undergraduate students, it creates a powerful economy that incentivizes engagement outside conventional curricular experiences. It is not intended to encompass the full quantity and variety of campus activity but is designed to emphasize and encourage co-curricular programs and events that promise particularly meaningful contributions to four specific categories of student development.

Christian Faith & Tradition (CFT)
Global Citizenship, Leadership, Diversity & the Professions (GCLDP)
Creative & Performing Arts (CPA)
Society & the Arts & Sciences (SAS)
Wellness, Safety & College Life (WSCL)

In addition, the Convocation Program recognizes and incentivizes students’ individual involvement in Community Service & Reflection (CSR).

Criteria for Convocation Credit

Many meaningful campus programs and events take place each semester outside of the Convocation Program. Programs are considered for Convocation credit based on the following criteria:

The quality of their leadership
Convocation program speakers or presenters must demonstrate advanced expertise and credibility in the subject to be presented.

Their pertinence and accessibility to a broad campus audience
Convocation programs must be open to the entire campus community and address topics and/or experiences of interest and applicability to a wide variety of perspective and experience.

Their institutional alignment and strategic significance
Convocation programs must be sponsored by a university organization, department, faculty or staff member. All program content and conduct must be consonant with the University’s Governing Ideas and Community Commitments and must clearly address one of the specified Convocation categories.

Their contribution to learning and student development
Convocation programs must connect to and identify specific learning outcomes that are meaningful and achievable.

Content
Students attend a predetermined number of programs in various categories. Requirements may vary based on when the student entered Belmont and transfer hours at the time of matriculation. Convocation includes a variety of experiences in the following categories:

  • Society & the Arts & Sciences (SAS): Events in this category should provide educational and formative opportunities for Belmont students related to the liberal arts and sciences, to the social sciences and cultural studies, as well as contemporary issues in local and global cultures and societies. Events in this category must meet one or more of the following criteria: 
    • Pertain to cultural studies and the development of culture(s). 
    • Pertain to the social sciences. 
    • Pertain to the liberal arts. 
    • Pertain to natural sciences and mathematics. 
    • Pertain to the health and applied sciences. 
  • Christian Faith & Tradition (CFT): Events in this category should provide opportunities for Belmont students to engage with the Christian tradition in any of its many facets (including but not limited to): theology, church history, missions, Biblical studies, as well as contemporary issues facing the church and the Christian tradition. Events in this category must meet one or more of the following criteria: 
    • Pertain to contemporary issues in Christianity. 
    • Pertain to Christian faith development. 
    • Pertain to multi-faceted Christian tradition. 
    • Pertain to the study of Christian worship forms. 
  • Creative & Performing Arts (CPA): Events in this category should provide educational and formative opportunities for Belmont students in the visual and performing arts. Events in this category must be held in appropriate on-campus venues and must meet on or more of the following criteria: 
    • Performances in musical or dramatic theatre. 
    • Performances in dance. 
    • Performances in literacy, poetic, or spoken word. 
    • Performances of musical works that display connection to the host department's academic mission. 
    • Displays of visual and fine art including performance art. 
  • Global Citizenship, Leadership, Diversity & the Professions (GCLDP): Events in this category should provide educational and formative opportunities for Belmont students related to their sense of self, purpose or role in their local communities and in the global community. Events in this category must meet one or more of the following criteria: 
    • Pertain to digital, local, regional, national and/or global citizenship. 
    • Pertain to leadership or leadership development. 
    • Pertain to professional development or the development of professions. 
    • Pertain to the understanding and appreciation of cultural and human diversity. 
  • Community Service & Reflection (CSR): CSR credits must be earned through active participation in individual or group community service which is 1) not required as part of an academic requirement or honor society/service organization and 2) does not offer renumeration (pay, goods, services, future career advancement, etc.) to the student and/or 3) occurs on behalf of an external non-profit/charitable organization. Note: Community Service must be done off campus except for pre-approved on-campus programs (blood drives, amnesty international letter writing, etc.). Additionally, CSR credits are awarded only after the submission of a suitable reflection piece.
  • Wellness, Safety & College Life (WSCL): Events in this category should provide educational and formative opportunities for Belmont students related to safety and wellness issues facing college students, as well as lifelong wellness and safety. Events in this category must meet one or more of the following criteria: 
    • Pertain to wellness (particular or holistic) opportunities.
    • Pertain to safety concerns particularly related to college students. 
    • Pertain to other issues and opportunities particular to life on campus. 
    • Pertain to health literacy. 

**Where program topic, content, or conduct is provocative or potentially divisive to the campus community, the university reserves the right to refuse the program or to require adjustments in the program in the interest of hospitality, critical engagement, and/or consonance with the university’s mission & vision.

Service-Learning Credit: Due to the emphasis that Belmont places on service-learning programs, students are allowed to earn convocation credit in the Community Service & Reflection category in addition to the class credit they receive for their participation in Belmont-sponsored service-learning opportunities.


Process
Students gain credits by attending approved programs in the various categories. Programs can include departmental or faculty lectures, guest speakers, musical events, art exhibits, etc. The student's ID is scanned at the program and then electronically transferred into a database of individual student records that holds each student's credits. Community Service & Reflection credit is obtained by completing a form that indicates the nature of the service performed and a contact such as a supervisor that may be called for verification.

Graduation
Convocation is a graduation requirement and students have not graduated for failure to complete their convo. It is very important that students keep track of their credits. These credits may be checked on the student's MyBelmont account by clicking on the "My Convocation" icon.