Welcome Back

Dear Members of the Saint Mary's College Community

At this beginning of the 143rd academic year of Saint Mary's College, I would like to extend a warm welcome to our new students, faculty and staff, and welcome back returning students, faculty and staff. I am personally looking forward to an exciting year full of academic engagement and a variety of activities forwarding our mission.

Those of you who have been away from campus for several months will undoubtedly notice that a large number of projects for the improvement of facilities and enhancement of the academic, residential and athletic activities have been undertaken and, in some cases, are still in progress. As I toured the campus during the summer months, I was continually impressed by the efficiency and dedication of our staff during this busy period. The buildings and grounds and technical crews have been hard pressed to keep on schedule and they have done an admirable job. The many administrative staff and faculty who were asked to accommodate to temporary or permanent changes in location or services have been equally patient and cooperative. One of the "bonus" projects nearing completion is a new fitness center in Madigan Gym. This cardiovascular center will be available to the entire Saint Mary's community; we anticipate opening this center in mid-September. Please refer to the weekly bulletin for the latest information about ongoing projects and improvements.

I would like to call to your attention several significant campus-wide events taking place this week. The first is the Common Time event tomorrow on Sustainability. This topic is an important concern in our academic life, in the campus facilities and operations, and in our College outreach. I look forward to joining our community in exploring ways that we can incorporate principles of sustainability in our mission and activities.

The second important event this week is the Faculty Welcome Dinner and Service Awards this Friday. In addition to welcoming new and returning faculty, we will honor 27 colleagues for their dedicated commitment to the students of Saint Mary's. This group has amassed 575 years of collective service! Please come to congratulate these colleagues!

I look forward also to working with an experienced Cabinet this year. As I announced in early summer, I have asked Carole Swain, Dean for Mission and Faculty Development, to join the Cabinet. This year she has taken on the added responsibility of interim Director of Campus Ministry, and will also be chairing a national Task Force for the restructuring of the USA/Toronto region of the Christian Brothers. Another new member of the Cabinet is Scott Kier who is interim Vice Provost for Student Life.

My best wishes to you all for an invigorating and successful year.

In Saint La Salle,

Br. Ronald Gallagher