My President’s Commissioning Story at University of Mobile

Jestavia Graham & Isabelle Ferguson Experience

My name is Jestavia Graham. Being a freshman in college is like a brand new start in life. I only went to one UM Day at the University of Mobile, and I knew this was where I needed to be. At the University of Mobile there are so many things you get to learn and experience. They provide opportunities to become closer and get involved in school, an example being the President’s Commisioning – which, in fact, I missed. Like I said, I went to one UM Day, and I really did not understand the importance of touching the Great Commission Globe in front of Weaver Hall. Little did I know, I was about to learn.

My name is Isabelle Ferguson. I had been to so many UM Days at the University of Mobile before I was a freshman, I could practically give the tour myself – script, facts, locations, and all. The President’s Commisisoning meant so much to me even before I knew the University of Mobile was my college of choice. Jestavia was one of my closest friends from my high school entering the University of Mobile. When the day of the President’s Commisioning rolled around, I looked everywhere for her. Turns out, she thought the President’s Commisioning was for residential students only, not commuters like the two of us. I didn’t want her to make it to graduation without making her official entrance. So, I planned a revamped President’s Commisioning for the very next day.

Purpose of the Globe
Isabelle: No other university has such a symbolic and meaningful ceremony. At the President’s Commisioning, a speech is given to the incoming freshmen to encourage them as they start this brand new journey. Every freshman lines up on the Dr. Fred and Sue Lacky Great Commission Lawn in front of Weaver Hall and takes turns touching the Great Commission Globe as they walk toward Weaver, symbolizing their entrance into the University of Mobile. Not just an entrance, a commitment to preparation for fulfilling God’s purpose for them in this world. Coincidentally, the UM president, Dr. Lonnie Burnett, gave his speech on “purpose” at this year’s commissioning. When the former freshmen graduate, they will again line up and touch the globe, this time as they are leaving the graduation ceremony on the lawn, signifying that they are ready to go out into the world and fulfill what God has planned for them. Goosebumps. Every time.

 Commissioning Remix
Jestavia: Going to a new school can be intimidating, especially when it comes to making new friends. Having Isabelle enter the same school made it slightly less scary. When I got to school on my second day, Isabelle told me to meet her on Weaver lawn at noon. I figured we were just going to meet and get lunch. She told me to set my stuff down because she was giving me my own President’s Commissioning. After giving me a long, inspirational speech, Isabelle started playing inspirational music from YouTube and forced me to walk all the way to the end of Weaver lawn. She cheered and clapped as I made my way up to the globe. Her remixed version of the commissioning made me feel more connected to the University of Mobile emotionally, mentally and spiritually. I’m also grateful to Isabelle for being committed to do this, because it will be a memory I will keep forever throughout my college journey.

Finally Home
Jestavia & Isabelle: We are happy to report that every day after that has been better than the last! First days are tough, but the caring and Christ-centered environment at the University of Mobile makes it nearly impossible to fail. We are reminded daily of why we chose this school by the smiles from strangers, caring teachers, and efforts made by the entire staff and student body to ensure our college experience is the best. The University of Mobile is our home.

About the Author
Jestavia Graham & Isabelle Ferguson

Jestavia Graham & Isabelle Ferguson

Jestavia Graham is a freshman from Mobile, Alabama, majoring in Vocal Performance at the University of Mobile. After graduation, she hopes to one day own her own music studio. She enjoys singing, drawing, and doing makeup. Isabelle Ferguson is a freshman at the University of Mobile from Mobile, Alabama. Her favorite thing about University of Mobile is the welcoming atmosphere no matter where you are on campus. She enjoys cooking, writing, and meeting new people.