President's Newsletter October 2016

October 11, 2016

Dear Faculty and Staff Colleagues,

Helen and I have had the good fortune to call Alvernia and Reading home for 11 years now, and we always look forward to the beginning of a new academic year. We enjoy hosting receptions for faculty and student leaders at Cedar Hill and having the opportunity to greet each and every member of the freshman class as they arrive at the orientation picnic.

We also see how the dawn of a new year brings out the best in our people. New students and faculty bring fresh energy. Cultural events stir reflection. Athletic events build spirit. Freshman Seminars and other courses engage students in pondering “enduring questions.”

But this fall has been like no other in memory, punctuated with some historic moments:

• Just days ago, we announced that our Board of Trustees had voted to introduce varsity football in the fall of 2018. This decision followed a comprehensive study that engaged members of our entire university community and included rigorous assessment by both campus and trustee task forces. Like our other athletic programs, the Alvernia football team will compete at the small-college, NCAA Division III level within the MAC conference. > Read more

• Alvernia has again received the President’s Community Service Honor Roll Award, this time earning the honor of “Distinction” in all three of the categories! It is the highest federal recognition an institution can receive for its commitment to community, service-learning, and civic engagement. Relatively few schools receive this special additional recognition, and Alvernia is one of only two Pennsylvania schools to earn “distinction” in these three categories.

• We began the semester by opening an arrival court and Welcome Center at Francis Hall and a new campus entryway off St. Bernardine Street that features a stately boulevard shared with the Bernardine Franciscan Sisters and the McGlinn Center. It is a campus entrance worthy of a “Distinctive Franciscan University!”

• In late August, as our first year students arrived on campus, we shared the news that we are planning our largest-ever expansion with creation of a 100,000 square foot Recreation, Wellness and Health Sciences Complex, called “The PLEX” as the highlight of a new East Campus.

And we still have half of October to go! Needless to say, reaction has been outstanding. I’ve heard from parents and alumni, community friends as well as elected officials and every segment of our campus, all noting our developments with great encouragement and pride.

There are many more highlights to share; just follow the links at the bottom of each page or jump to a specific section through the left-hand navigation.


> Continue to the BOARD OF TRUSTEES section




president's newsletter october 2016

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