Gov. Healey to discuss public service during Nov. 1 talk at Amherst College

Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey will speak about the need for and benefits of public service when she visits Amherst College on Nov. 1.

Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey will speak about the need for and benefits of public service when she visits Amherst College on Nov. 1. AP

Staff Report

Published: 10-16-2023 12:50 PM

AMHERST — An initiative for members of the Amherst College community to serve the greater good in both their professional and personal endeavors is a strategic priority for Amherst College President Michael A. Elliott.

On the evening of Nov. 1, almost exactly 60 years after President John F. Kennedy mentioned the responsibility to serve the public interest during the groundbreaking of the college’s Frost Library, Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey will be on campus to discuss the need for and benefits of public service.

“Democracy and the Greater Good: A Conversation with Governor Maura Healey” is the title of the event taking place at Johnson Chapel, starting at 6 p.m. A limited number of seats will be made available to the general public.

Elliott said in a statement that he looks forward to hearing Healey’s thoughts on civic involvement and the current political landscape.

“At a time when American democracy is under fire and mistrust of public institutions is high, Gov. Healey’s experience reflects her commitment to contribute to the greater societal good and demonstrates the value, and enjoyment, of serving the public,” Elliott said.

Healey’s visit comes as the college is rededicating a mission to educate students for democracy, building and promoting a culture among them in which their experiences at Amherst will prepare them for a lifetime of contributing to the greater good. This initiative seeks to build a community that makes room for both disagreement and for connection, one that practices the kind of recognition and negotiation that the everyday life of democracy requires.

On Oct. 26, 1963, Kennedy’s visit to the college addressed power, politics and public service.

“What good is a private college or university unless it’s serving a great national purpose? .... The library being constructed today, this college itself, all of this, of course, was not done merely to give this school’s graduates an advantage, an economic advantage, in the life struggle,” Kennedy said. “It does do that. But ... in return for the great opportunity which society gives the graduates of this and related schools, it seems to me incumbent upon this and other schools’ graduates to recognize their responsibility to the public interest. Privilege is here, and with privilege goes responsibility.”

Article continues after...

Yesterday's Most Read Articles

Former social studies teacher returns as principal at Northampton High School
Leading lights: Four Hampshire County women receive state honor as ‘heroines’
Father’s Day 2024: South Hadley’s Rich Marjanski cherishes era coaching his three daughters on the soccer pitch
A ‘Refuse to Lose’ reunion: UMass stars gather to talk about Final Four run for new documentary
Judge denies Rintala’s motion to reduce prison sentence
Columnist Rev. Andrea Ayvazian: The co-op at the heart of the community