The Values and Vision campaign for Alvernia University:
Transformational change has been underway in recent years up on the hill known in bygone days as Mount Alvernia! Shortly after beginning my tenure as Alvernia’s sixth president in 2005, with strong support and guidance from our Board of Trustees, I convened a large group of faculty, staff, and students to begin a strategic planning process. We drew on helpful feedback from the faculty and campus community, our alumni, fellow university presidents, and many friends in the local community to produce an ambitious strategic plan. Approved by our Board, this plan set the direction for Alvernia for the decade stretching from 2008-2018.
The plan framed a bold vision for Alvernia to become a “Distinctive Franciscan University.” A historically commuter school would become home to a large residential community; a predominantly local school would attract students from throughout the Mid-Atlantic region; a seemingly land-locked school would expand its campus dramatically; a once-tiny college would become a thriving university. And Alvernia would achieve well-deserved recognition for its contributions as a civic leader, for its emphases on leadership and ethics, and for its longtime commitment to being a place of opportunity—rooted in Franciscan values--for students of diverse backgrounds.
Much has been accomplished toward our shared vision. Exceptional leadership by trustees, a dedicated faculty and staff, and sound business practices have made this possible. But essential to Alvernia’s progress has been the unprecedented support of generous donors—many of them civic leaders and friends from the local community.
The priorities of the Values & Vision Campaign mirrored those
of our strategic plan. Publically
announced at our President’s Dinner in October 2008, when the country was on
the brink of a serious economic collapse, this was the largest, most
comprehensive campaign in Alvernia’s history. We proceeded, undeterred and
unafraid, confident in the commitment of longtime and new supporters. Few would
have predicted that five years later we would exceed our aggressive $27 million
goal and reach $32 million. Thank you for making this possible.
Alvernia is today recognized for combining the best qualities of a small college with many of the opportunities of a much larger university. We are a recognized leader in healthcare and human services programs. Our students gain invaluable “real world” experience through learning opportunities on and beyond the campus. They selflessly serve and make a positive impact on our local community. We on the faculty and staff are confident they will become ethical leaders with moral courage. Like our alumni, they will meet the challenge I pose to them at the annual First-Year Convocation: to graduate from Alvernia prepared “To Do Well and To Do Good.”
Let me thank you by sharing that wonderful Franciscan blessing.
Peace and All Good,
Thomas F. Flynn