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CCU honors summer graduates

August 9, 2014

A total of 202 students marched across the stage at Coastal Carolina University’s HTC Center today in CCU’s summer commencement ceremony.

Commencement speaker Arne Flaten, professor of art and chair of CCU’s Department of Visual Art, spoke on the topic “Carpe Diem: Of Dead Poets and Epistemology.”

“Don’t wait for your future passively,” said Flaten. “Go get it. Seize the day! Seize your lives. Take responsibility for your actions…. Enjoy your successes, but relish your mistakes, too. We frequently learn more from our failures than our triumphs…. And be ready, because life doesn’t unfold the way you think it will. That would be boring.”

In addition to being persistent in the face of failure, Flaten advised the graduates to value the journey of life in addition to the destination. “…it’s not all about getting somewhere, it’s about the thrill of the ride…. Maybe it’s about turning off your smartphones once in a while and engaging with your physical world as well.”

Flaten joined CCU’s faculty in 2003. He earned a bachelor’s degree in art studio and English literature from St. Olaf College in Minnesota, where he was elected Phi Beta Kappa. After teaching in Israel and Rwanda, he earned his master’s and doctoral degrees in art history from Indiana University at Bloomington. Flaten was the HTC Distinguished Teacher-Scholar Lecturer at Coastal Carolina University in 2013, and in 2014 he was elected to the European Academy of Sciences and Arts (EASA).