It’s been an incredibly busy month for all of us at the College. We weathered some storms together, literally, and we took action on a number of important issues that will help to further strengthen the College.
This month, the campus community survived a weather event dubbed the “1,000-year flood.” In seeing so many people rally around one another to help, we saw the true strength of character of our state. We also saw that strength of character on our campus.
I want to thank our many exceptional College and Aramark employees who helped ensure our students were safe and accommodated them with hot meals while our campus was closed. I also want to express my sincerest gratitude to all of our employees who helped get our campus back up and running so quickly so that we could continue educating our students.
We also tackled head-on some financial issues at the College. The Board of Trustees passed a resolution approving a $1.25 million budget-adjustment package. We addressed this challenge in a way that resulted in no employee losing his/her job and that protected our core academic mission and our unique student experience. The Board of Trustees also approved a new $50 security fee for all enrolled students. The fee will be charged each semester beginning this upcoming spring semester and will be used solely to address campus security and cybersecurity needs.
I believe the running theme throughout October was perseverance – perseverance in the face of challenges (or opportunities, depending on the view you take). And, we certainly persevered. When I reflect back on this month, I recall a quote by Scottish politician Walter Elliot: “Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other.”
Whether faced with storms rarely experienced or important budgetary concerns, we find a way to stand tall at the end of the race. We may have moments that truly test us – our spirits, our beliefs and our priorities – but we will never quit or fall. Simply put, we are always going to persevere.
I thank you all for your continued support, passion and ideas. I wish you all the best, and I hope you have a wonderful, safe and happy Halloween.