Convocation is on Saturday, May 4, 2024 at 2 p.m. On-stage participants must arrive by 1:30 p.m.

Event Location: Schneebeck Concert Hall

Academic Convocation is a celebration of student achievement. The event will feature remarks by selected student and faculty speakers and the presentation of university awards.

Faculty Speaker for Academic Convocation - Melvin Rouse, Jr.

Melvin Rouse, Jr., PhD is an Associate Professor of Psychology and serves on the governing board of the Gender & Queer Studies and Neuroscience majors here at the University. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Virginia Tech University, his Master of Arts in Psychology from Boston University, and a Master’s and Doctorate in Psychological and Brain Sciences from Johns Hopkins University. Prior to joining the Puget Sound faculty, Dr. Rouse was a postdoctoral research fellow at UC San Diego School of Medicine in the department of OBGYN and reproductive sciences. As a neuro-endocrinologist, his research looks at how hormones, the brain, and social behavior interact using songbirds as a model system. This model is unique in that it allows for the ability to study how gonadal hormones act to modulate patterns of learning and behavior, as well as how hormones affect the perception of behavior. These studies demonstrate the influence of the endocrine system on brain plasticity, learning, and social behavior. Dr. Rouse teaches in the areas of behavioral neuroscience, hormones and behavior, human sexuality, research methods and statistics, and comparative neuropsychology.

Professor Rouse’s Academic Convocation address is titled, "Self-Talk: The Power of Stories in Shaping Our Journey."

Student Speaker for Academic Convocation - Kaya Rose Heimowitz

Kaya Rose Heimowitz is graduating with a double major in Chinese and English, with an emphasis in Creative Writing. Kaya’s interest in language and travel led her to study abroad both in Taiwan and Dublin during her time at Puget Sound. On campus, Kaya is an active community member and leader. She contributes to the independent student newspaper, The Trail, as both a columnist and section editor, and previously worked as the Director of Communications for Crosscurrents, Puget Sound’s literary and arts journal. Kaya serves as co-president of the Jewish Student Union and is a member of the Spiritual Life Leadership Team. She was recently awarded a Fulbright grant and plans to continue her education at National Chengchi University in Taipei, where she will pursue a Master's in International Communication Studies with a focus on Advertising. 

Kaya’s Academic Convocation address is titled, "The Story of Your Life: How Language Influences the Experience of Time."