We were busy on campus last weekend with some really special events taking place. Sacred Heart hosted the Northeast Regional Ethics Bowl for the third (and final) consecutive year. Next year, another school will take on the hosting responsibilities, but we received a lot of compliments from coaches and students from the other 15 schools about how well-run the event was and for keeping the focus on ethics. Congratulations and thanks to June-Ann Greeley for an outstanding job coordinating the event for three years and thanks to all the students, faculty and staff who gave up some or all of their Saturday to volunteer as judges and moderators. Last, but not least, congratulations, also, to our two participating teams from SHU and their dedicated coaches. You did us proud!
There were also a number of musical events that showed off the incredible talents of our students and served to get attendees into the Christmas spirit. The chamber ensembles, choruses and band all put on programs. I never get tired of their spectacular performances.
In addition, we were treated to great music from our various choirs during our annual Lessons & Carols service Sunday evening. And it was great to have our newest alum, Ernie Anastos, back on campus to participate as a reader during the service.
I want to thank everyone who came out to volunteer for the Late Night Breakfast for students on Monday. I know it means a lot to the students to see you all there to serve their meals and wish them well as they take their final exams.
Earlier this week, 24 seniors in the Health Science Department presented their capstone papers and posters. This represented a semester’s worth of work and is a requirement for those advancing to graduate programs in their fields. This program has grown from five to 165 students in just four years, and the topics they come up with are fascinating. This year, the subject matter included the effects of Reiki therapy on anxiety, depression and chronic illness and the effects of acupuncture on infertility in women. I expect to see them published in a national journal one of these days.
I want to take a moment to thank our student-athletes for their generosity in supporting the efforts of the Forever Pioneers to raise money for scholarships. The Forever Pioneers challenged our D1 teams to achieve 100 percent participation in giving as part of a campaign where student gifts would be matched by Gary and Mary Ann Levin ’78. The challenge concluded last week with 100 percent participation from 18 teams and gifts from 589 student-athletes. A total of $4,373.02 was raised. I am looking forward to hosting the women’s lacrosse and men’s basketball teams for dinner next semester, as they are they were the winners in a drawing of all teams that achieved full participation in the student-athlete challenge. Thanks for ensuring that future students will have the same great experience that you did. And thanks, also, to Gary and Mary Ann for their continued support of our scholarship programs.
We have some very special guests on campus right now—a group of students from various universities in Mexico. They are participants in the Proyecta 100,000 project that was launched this past year by the U.S. and Mexico with the goal of developing a shared vision on educational opportunities and boosting student mobility and exchanges between the two countries. An initial group of 60 students was here for three weeks in November, and this group will be here until December 19. They will participate in events and activities both on campus and in the surrounding area. We welcome them to SHU and are excited to have them here for the Christmas season.
Last night, I once again had a chance to host dinner for friends of the University. And again, the SHUpermen brought down the house with their incredible harmonies. We have been keeping all of our performing arts students busy during the Christmas season. We are grateful that they take time from their studies to share their amazing talents with us. Watch their performance here.
Tomorrow we bid farewell to our colleague and friend, Ed Malin. Services will take place at 10:30 a.m. in the Chapel of the Holy Spirit. His impact on this University is immeasurable. He will be deeply missed and long remembered.
I hope that faculty and staff have marked their calendars for Wednesday evening’s Advent Wreath Lighting service and Christmas party. I am hoping to see everyone there. And, yes, Jersey rules will apply to the awarding of the raffle prizes!
If you are around this weekend, consider coming to the Irish Christmas program in the Edgerton on Saturday. It will feature Mick Moloney, Athena Tergis and promises to be a great show.
As our students finish up the semester and head home for the holidays, I want to once again wish them all safe travels and a wonderful winter break. Merry Christmas!