April 9, 2010
The University of Mississippi officially installed a new chancellor on April 9, 2010. Dr. Daniel W. Jones was formally sworn in as chancellor during a 10 a.m. investiture ceremony in the Gertrude C. Ford Center for the Performing Arts. The inauguration's theme, selected by Chancellor Jones and reflecting an area of deep commitment for him as an educator and physician, was "Transformation Through Service." Service has long been a part of The University of Mississippi's core mission, and students, faculty and staff focused their attention and efforts even more closely on these activities during the months leading up to the actual investiture.
The investiture of a university chancellor formally installs the institution's highest-ranking officer, confers upon him the ceremonial accoutrements of office, and gives the larger academic and civic communities an opportunity to convene and celebrate their shared values.
At the ceremony, the attire of delegates representing other academic institutions, as well as that of UM's own faculty, closely resembles the colorful array of caps, gowns and hoods on display at commencement. This academic regalia has historic roots in medieval times, when students and faculty wore the robes of the clergy. Academic attire began to appear on United States campuses in the late 1890s, and, since that time, its use has become customary for solemn university functions.
An inauguration is viewed as an ideal time to communicate the strengths, ideals and future direction of the university.