Fiat Common Ground

We are often reminded of what makes Alfred University such a unique and special place, where the magic of our students’ experiences here translate into meaningful change in the world.

Alicia Eggert is a 2009 M.F.A. alumna of ours promoting meaningful change through her outdoor art. Alicia’s core message is that by seeing past our differences and working together toward a common good, magic can indeed happen.

Through a powerful TED talk in July (Imaginative Sculpture That Explore How We Perceive Reality), Alicia spoke about being a youngster in South Africa, where her parents, missionaries working to establish a multiracial church in Capetown, moved in 1986 when she was five years old. Apartheid, South Africa’s policy of racial separation, was in place at the time. Through the hard-fought efforts of the country’s citizens, apartheid ended in 1994.

“The thing that left a long-lasting impression on me was how the people I met in South Africa could envision a better future for themselves and their country. A future they really believed was possible,” Alicia said. “And then they worked together, relentlessly, for decades, until they achieved that extraordinary historic change.”

Alicia’s TED talk touched on a central theme of Common Ground, our recently established one-unit course for all new main campus undergraduate students: that despite our differences, we have the ability to collaborate and achieve greatness. Alicia explained how she has used art to demonstrate the power of working together, of finding common ground.

For nearly two centuries, Alfred University has been a place where students have learned that by seeing past their differences and coming together to pursue shared goals, magic can indeed happen.

Fiat Common Ground!