Ceremony used to connect the community and raise funds
President Tom Jackson Jr. was officially welcomed to Humboldt State University at an investiture event held on Jan. 15 in the John Van Duzer Theatre.
President Jackson saw the event as more of an opportunity for the campus and surrounding communities to connect on shared goals.
“The best part about this is that it gives us a chance to relearn how to celebrate,” said President Jackson. “We are trying to have more events where we come together as a community and as a Humboldt family to celebrate. We want to do as many things as we can to bring people together.”
Community effort was evident as alumni, city officials from Eureka and Arcata, local tribe members and representatives from other California State University campuses including Chancellor Timothy White. A dinner following the Investiture raised $160,000 that will be used for future scholarships.
Former HSU President Rollin Richmond was in attendance as well saying he was happy to receive the invitation back to HSU.
“I wouldn’t have missed this. I think President Jackson has been doing a fantastic job and I am excited to see what else he does,” said Richmond.
Tribal Chairwoman Cheryl Seidner of the Wiyot tribe opened the ceremony with a blessing before thanking the university for the invitation.
Following a series of testimonies and speeches, President Jackson addressed those in attendance, thanking them for coming and pledging his commitment to keep students safe on behalf of their parents.
“We want them to feel that they are just as welcomed on a campus as they are in a church, a grocery store or walking on the street,” said Jackson. “A parent also dreads the day they will receive that phone call no parent ever wants to receive.
“There have been too many parents who have received a phone call and one such parent still seeks the truth,” said President Jackson. “We need justice for Josiah.”
At the end of his speech, Jackson spoke of the beauty of the campus and Humboldt county itself that draws in students.
“When the redwoods whisper and the ocean roars, there’s Humboldt,” said President Jackson. “An amazing place where our students’ dreams come true.”