Monday, August 31, 2015

Distinctiveness – the MVCC Cultural Series

The MVCC Cultural Series Fall Schedule recently hit mailboxes throughout the County. As I reviewed it, I quickly got my pen and started checking off the dates of the events that caught my interest – headliner Bill Nye The Science Guy; Sawyer Fredericks (winner of NBC’s “The Voice”); Filharmonic (from NBC’s “The Sing Off” and the film “Pitch Perfect 2”); Channing the mentalist; TEDxUtica, the Unspoken International Human Rights Film Festival; the Listening Room Concert Series and the Family Fun and Film Series at the Rome Campus; an actual naturalization ceremony of our newest citizens; and numerous other movies and performances that provide high-quality entertainment and thought-provoking experiences to help our students and community grow and learn together.

Over the past several years, my family and I have had the pleasure of experiencing some amazing speakers, performers, and musicians including:

Speakers – Maya Angelou; Neil deGrasse Tyson; Geoffrey Canada; George Saunders (2011 Time Magazine Top 100 most influential people); Pulitzer Prize winner Richard Russo; Elizabeth Smart; Captain Phillips (not Tom Hanks, but the real Captain); Arun Ghandi (grandson of Mohandas Gandhi); media expert Jean Kilbourne; and Tony Mendez (the real-life federal agent played by Ben Affleck in the movie “Argo”).

Musicians and Entertainers – “American Idol” winner Phillip Phillips; Grammy winners Kacey Musgraves, Hot Chelle Rae and the Band Perry; chart-toppers Gavin DeGraw, Edwin McCain; Sean Kingston, and Shontelle; “America’s Got Talent” winner Kenichi Ebina and “AGT” finalist and MVCC alum, Leon Etienne and Romy Low; and comedians Brian Regan, “AGT” runner-up Taylor Williamson, and actor Rob Schneider.

These are just a sampling of what I’ve seen and experienced over the years through the incredible offerings of the MVCC Cultural Series. I continue to be amazed at the programming our Cultural Events Council develops and the first-class experiences our Events staff create. The entire Cultural Series is included in the student activity fee, so students pay nothing extra, and most events are only $5 for general community members. The MVCC Cultural Series is certainly a point of distinction for the College with significant advantages to our students and our community.

For more information, go to www.mvcc.edu/culture. If you have any comments or questions, you can contact me directly at presblog@mvcc.edu.