University of Mobile Welcomes New Students with the Great Commissioning Tradition

Zac DouglasNews

MOBILE, Ala. – The University of Mobile welcomed incoming students on the first day of class with the President’s Commissioning, a tradition in which new students touch the Great Commission Globe to begin their college career.

Students, parents, faculty and staff gathered on the front lawn of Weaver Hall on campus to watch the commissioning of new students on Aug. 17.

“We are here!” said Todd Greer, vice president for academic affairs, celebrating the return of students and start of fall semester. Students have been off campus since March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“We’re back from the longest spring break ever,” said UM President Lonnie Burnett during a brief address. “I am just thrilled to see students on our campus.”

Burnett spoke about “purpose.”

“Our motto, Higher Education for a Higher Purpose, isn’t just words. If we seek and follow God’s purpose, he will do good things.” said Burnett.

He encouraged students to find the direction God has for their lives.

“Never fall for the trap of saying ‘I have no purpose.’ There’s power in God’s purpose. You’re committing yourselves to recognize that God has a purpose for your life, and we each must strive to complete that purpose,” Burnett said.

The President’s Commissioning is the first step in the university’s two-part Great Commission Tradition. Incoming students touch the globe to symbolize the student’s commitment to open up to intellectual and spiritual development during their time at UM. Students also touch the globe after graduation to symbolize they are being sent into the world to fulfill their professional calling.

After the president’s address, incoming students headed down a walkway lined with parents, faculty and staff clapping and encouraging them as they touched the globe to begin their education at the University of Mobile.

For more information on the University of Mobile, please visit, or call Enrollment Services at 251.442.2222.

About the University of Mobile

The University of Mobile is a Christ-centered liberal arts and sciences institution with a vision of higher education for a higher purpose, founded to honor God by equipping students for their future professions through rigorous academic preparation and spiritual transformation. Core values are: Christ-Centered, Academically-Focused, Student-Devoted and Distinctively-Driven. The university offers on-campus and online bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in over 75 academic programs. Founded in 1961, the University of Mobile is affiliated with the Alabama Baptist State Convention and is located 10 miles north of Mobile, Alabama on a campus of over 880 acres.

For more information about the University of Mobile, visit the website at or call Enrollment Services at 1.800.WIN.RAMS or 251.442.2222.