At the start of his Convocation Address, renowned neurologist Martin A. Samuels ’67 told the Class of 2020 that he decided to set aside his prepared remarks, having spent the previous night thinking about all that had happened since his own Williams graduation and that very moment.
Reflecting on the campus, he remarked: “And there is Chapin Hall, just the same as it always was. Williams is one of these places that can change and be the same. I can tell you it will always be a place where you can come and have peace.”
Prior to his address, Samuels, who is founding chair, emeritus, of the Department of Neurology at Brigham & Women’s Hospital and a distinguished professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School, received a Williams Bicentennial Medal for achievement in any field of endeavor. Also receiving medals that day were Kiat W. Tan ’65, a globally recognized horticulturalist; Danielle Deane-Ryan ’97, director of the Inclusive Clean Economy Program at the Nathan Cummings Foundation; and Carina Vance Mafla ’99, who served as health minister of Ecuador (and is featured on p. 16 of this magazine). For more on convocation, visit bit.ly/wmsconvo2019.