Office of the President
The University of Texas at Dallas
Celebrates the Inauguration of

Dr. Richard C. Benson

as the Fifth President of the University

Thursday, October 27, 2016
Three O’ Clock in the Afternoon


Order of Ceremony

Kelly Durbin Jazz Combo

UT Dallas Brass Ensemble

Presiding and Welcome
Dr. Hobson Wildenthal, Executive Vice President and Provost

The National Anthem
Matara Hitchcock, McDermott Scholar and Emerging Media and Communication Major

Mary McDermott Cook, President of the Eugene McDermott Foundation

Charles Davidson MS’80, Alumnus, the Naveen Jindal School of Management

Akshitha Padigela, Student Government President and Finance Major

Monica Lou, McDermott Scholar and Biology Major:
Accompanied by Michael McVay, School of Arts and Humanities Faculty

William H. McRaven, Chancellor, The University of Texas System

Installation of The President
Ernest Aliseda, Chairman of the Academic Affairs Committee, UT System Board of Regents

Presentation of Emblems of Office
Chain of Office, Naomi Emmett, President of Staff Council
University Mace, Dr. Tim Redman, Speaker of Faculty Senate

Presidential Address
Dr. Richard C. Benson

The Alma Mater
Matara Hitchcock, McDermott Scholar and Emerging Media and Communication Major

Kelly Durbin Jazz Combo

Guests are requested to remain seated until the platform party and academic participants have recessed from the auditorium.


Alma Mater

The music for the alma mater was created by internationally recognized composer Dr. Robert Xavier Rodríguez. Its lyrics were created by Bill Dunn and Neely Reynolds.

UT Dallas orange and green
Founders’ visionary dream
To inflame the scholar’s heart
Lighting pathways through the dark
Reaching out from earth to space
Serving all the human race
Joined as one in unity
Alma mater UTD

University Mace

The mace is a ceremonial staff of authority that administrators and faculty at universities worldwide carry at the head of academic processions. The UT Dallas mace was handcrafted by local woodworkers from part of the 600-year-old Treaty Oak Tree in Austin, which is said to have shaded Stephen F. Austin as he signed the first boundary agreement between the American Indians and Texas settlers in 1824. The 4-foot, 10-pound mace includes silver university seals surrounding a wafer embedded with Texas Instruments’ microchips, representing the role of the company in the founding of UT Dallas. A steel band in the headpiece and the metal foot of the staff are fashioned from scientific instruments designed by the UT Dallas space sciences institute and flown aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavor in September 1995.

University Seal

The Seal of The University of Texas at Dallas features a shield that is divided into two fields, the upper and the lower. In the lower field is the historic wreath — the right half of which is an olive branch, the left half a live oak branch — and the star of the Great Seal of the State of Texas. In the upper field is an open book indicating an institution of learning. The shield rests in a circle and contains the motto, “Disciplina Praesidium Civitatis.” The motto is the late Dr. Edwin W. Fay’s terse Latin rendering of the famous quotation from Mirabeau B. Lamar: “A cultivated mind is the guardian genius of democracy.”

Presidential Chain of Office

The chain of office is a traditional symbol used to recognize the authority and responsibilities of a university president. The links of the UT Dallas chain of office are engraved with the names of the current president and his predecessors, with Benson’s name on the link directly above a medallion in the form of the university’s seal. The chain of office, which is worn around the neck and shoulders, will be used at commencements and other occasions when academic regalia are appropriate.

Maps & Directions

The Edith O’Donnell Arts and Technology Building (ATC) is on the east side of the mall, between the Eugene McDermott Library (MC) and the Naveen Jindal School of Management (JSOM). The Lecture Hall room number is ATC 1.102.


  • Drivers holding guest parking passes can park in any green space. There are green spaces in Parking Structure 1 (PS1) and Lot D. PS1 also has metered spaces.
  • Visitors without parking passes can park in Lot F and acquire a visitor’s pass 7 a.m.-9 p.m. weekdays at the Visitor Center and University Bookstore (VCB).

A printable parking map is available online.

UT Dallas' physical address:

800 W. Campbell Road
Richardson, Texas 75080