The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

Gatrell initiated through presidential investiture ceremony

Rob Le Cates
Jay Gatrell was formally inducted as Eastern’s thirteenth university president Wednesday in the Dvorak Concert Hall at the Doudna Fine Arts Center. Jay succeeds former University President David Glassman.

The presidential investiture ceremony began at 1 p.m. Wednesday and there were students with also a lot of staff that celebrated the confirmation of Eastern’s president, Jay Gatrell.  

Students found Gatrell’s speech to be very kindhearted when presenting it to the people at the Dvorak Concert Hall in Doudna Fine Arts Center.  

“I would say that from hearing his speech at the investiture, he is very caring,” college student affairs major Attainea Toulon said. “He is going to work on the relational aspect of things at EIU. So, I am excited to see how he continues to do that last president.” 

The recognition the new leadership role was helpful to students who have not previously put names with Eastern leaders faces.  

“Coming out of COVID, a lot of us were like, very much inside and everything was virtual, I think coming to a reception like this. It put a lot of names, a lot of faces to the names,” Toulon said. 

Some students said it is important to understand how tight Eastern is as a community and that its leaders realize the perspective students have of campus.  

“So, by knowing the president and attending events like this are just because you are really helping foster those relationships,” political science major Karolina Guzek said. “He has a good strategic plan to advance the university. I highly encourage everyone to look at it.” 

Some are excited for the new president, and they hope for a better future coming ahead for EIU. 

“He just really brings a good energy to campus,” Guzek said. “He has a lot of great ideas, especially as a first-generation college student myself, I really resonate with him when he talks about, like helping first generation college students navigate the college.”   

“We should not just get to know the administrators super well on just a personal level, and you get a lot of more information about what is happening at Eastern, so it is just very informational,” Guzek said. “It is good to celebrate the wins.” 

Students are also hoping for a change in the settings regarding campus diversity with the new president in the leadership role.  

“Well, I am a firm advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion,” Toulon said. “That is something that we all must work on. Improving in any setting that we are in, I do know that currently, there is a decision on the new diversity, equity, and inclusion officer at EIU. “So, I am happy to see that the university is making this a priority.”  

The investiture ceremony of Jay Gatrell featured author Harlan Cohen. 


Chandler Smith can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].


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About the Contributors
Chandler Smith
Chandler Smith, Reporter
Chandler Smith is a senior broadcast journalism major. He previously served as a reporter at The News.
Rob Le Cates
Rob Le Cates, Editor-in-Chief
Rob Le Cates is a junior journalism major. He previously served as summer editor-in-chief, photo editor and assistant photo editor at The News.

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