This has been a fun week for me because I had the opportunity to congratulate faculty and staff on their hard work and commitment to our students. On Wednesday, I attended the annual luncheon to honor our administrative assistants. They are usually the unsung heroes in any organization. None of us could get by without them.
Yesterday was the
Second Annual Faculty Awards Reception, organized by Provost Laura Niesen de
Abruna, where faculty members are honored for tenure, promotions, grants,
sabbatical awards and more. I particularly want to congratulate Steven Michels
from the Government and Politics Department for winning the Annual Excellence
Award for both scholarship and teaching. In what I believe is an unprecedented occurrence,
two separate selection committees chose him as their winner and – although
there were many outstanding nominations – both committees believed he was the
clear-cut choice. Congratulations to Steve and all the honorees.
Have you seen the new banners we have been hanging around campus? The installation is not quite complete as there are still several more to go up. I hope you like them as much as I do.
We also installed a new sign at the dining hall in the Commons to let everyone know it is called Linda’s. The name allows us to continue to honor Board of Trustees member Linda E. McMahon for her generosity to this University with both her time and money.
One of our most famous alums, John Ratzenberger, was on campus Tuesday for a student lecture. He shared the impact that his childhood in Bridgeport and his time at SHU has had on his career. Yes, he admitted that he originally got involved with theater to impress a girl, but his natural talent was quickly evident. During the presentation, he did an improv routine with several members of the Awkward Handshakes who were in attendance. We appreciate his taking the time to visit and hope to have him back again to share more of his great stories.
Also on Tuesday, we hosted a discussion on the recent papal conclave and the impact the new pope may have. The three panelists – our own Michael W. Higgins, Fairfield University’s George Collins and writer David Gibson – are all papal experts in their own way. Under the guidance of moderator Tony Ciorra, attendees heard about the historical significance of choosing this particular pope and the influence he is likely to have on the Church going forward. I hope I didn’t miss anything too important when I dozed off during Higgins’ presentation.
Our campus is once again filled with special guests today as Admissions hosts its final informational session for admitted students and their families. Students will make their final decisions by Wednesday, and I am looking forward to learning all about the incoming class of 2017.
Heartfelt Designs—our student-run T-shirt business—is releasing its third and final shirt of the semester. It has an “I survived” theme and is a must-have for all of us who survived Sandy, Nemo and the Mayan Apocalypse!
Tonight begins our annual Relay for Life fundraiser. Organizers have put a great deal of effort into this event that will raise funds for cancer research. This fundraiser is always both moving and joyful. Stop by the Pitt Center any time from 6 p.m. tonight to 6 a.m. tomorrow to support the students, faculty and staff who have made a commitment to this important cause.
SHU L.O.V.E. will present a pops concert Saturday evening. They are always a pleasure to listen to. And don’t forget to mark your calendars for the Concert Against Bullying on Wednesday at 2 in the Chapel.
Enjoy the beautiful spring weather over the weekend!