By President Jim Collins
Welcome! I always enjoy the start of a new academic year, and I trust you are finding early fulfillment with academic and co-curricular experiences.
It’s nice to see so many familiar faces among our returning students, and it’s a pleasure to officially welcome our new first-year, transfer and graduate students to campus. While we don’t yet have an official enrollment count, it’s safe to say that we’ll report similar total number with perhaps a slight increase from last academic year.
Speaking of last academic year, we had any number of successes from which we can be both proud of and build upon. These accomplishments ranged from LCTV earning Best All-Around Television Newscast from the Region 7 Society of Professional Journalists Awards, Dance Marathon retaining its number one fundraising per capita status in the nation, men’s soccer finishing second in the country, and the sports management program winning its ninth national case study completion in the past 10 years.
As we begin a new year, we unveil several new initiatives:
-We enroll our first cohort of students in our new school counseling graduate program
-We launch our first 3/2 programs in athletic training and business administration
-We now provide a biomedical track with our ABET-accredited engineering program
-We rank among the top 30 baccalaureate colleges/universities in the country as cited by Washington Monthly. Specifically, we are No. 11 on the list
-We open new spaces on campus to include: science hall lab, intercultural programs, campus ministry, the Zen Den in the counseling center, the ACC Convenience Store and Starbucks On-The-Go
Like our student body, a majority of our faculty and staff return to campus while welcoming new colleagues. As always, our faculty and staff are here to serve, educate, push and encourage you to Be More. I strongly recommend that you take the time to get to know them, seek their counsel and find ways to learn from them. Collectively, they are well credentialed, deeply caring and enjoy opportunities to help you grow in all your learning experiences.
With so much public unrest, negative political rhetoric, societal ignorance and human brokenness, I challenge you to join me in continuing to make Loras the beacon from which others can learn. We must keep open minds and open hearts and engage in civil discourse even when we disagree. To the extent we can live our values, promote and honor the dignity of all, and serve and support those who are alone, broken or in need, we truly demonstrate the essence of the Loras community.
In doing so, we must take charge of and be responsible for our own well-being. Be sure to focus on academics, practice your faith, stay physically active, get involved on and off campus, seek balance, be positive and stay away from negative forces. I know it sounds like a lot, but that’s why you’re here. Loras provides the people, programs and atmosphere for you to succeed at the highest levels. At all times, conduct yourself in a manner that honors yourself, your family and Loras College. We’ll help you along the way. After all, Duhawks support Duhawks!
Welcome to the 2016-17 academic year. Let’s have a great year!
President Jim Collins