Many of you have asked me how I’ve enjoyed my first Maryland summer. Aside from the recent heat wave, I’ve had a delightful and productive three months since our spring commencement. As we approach autumn, I look forward to seeing many of you around campus—which I hear is absolutely beautiful with the changing leaves!
Next week we will welcome more than 22,250 graduate and undergraduate students to our classrooms. At Convocation this Friday, we’ll launch 4,840 new students into college life, including both first-time freshmen and transfers from other institutions. More than 6,000 students will call TU their home-away-from-home, 700 of whom will be the first to live in our two new beautiful, apartment-style residence halls in West Village.
We have a great deal to accomplish this semester. At the top of that list are two national searches: one for Vice President of Inclusion and Institutional Equity, who will advance our priority to be a more diverse and inclusive campus, and another for the Vice President of University Advancement and Alumni Relations. Your participation in these searches is so important, so please be ready to contribute when we hold our campus forums.
The energy and excitement of the new semester will continue during Presidential Inauguration Week in September. I hope to see you at events that will be held throughout the week, as we celebrate Towson University’s proud history and promising future. I am honored to follow the visionary leaders that have skillfully guided TU’s evolution over the past one-hundred and fifty years.
Later this fall, we’ll be developing plans to create a world-class career center that will engage our students throughout their TU experience, from internship to retirement. The center will enhance our career advising and job placement programs for students following their graduation and well into their careers. It will also help forge a stronger connection to the business community and underscore TU’s impact on the workforce and economic development of our state.
Additionally, I wholeheartedly believe we can competitively advantage our graduates if we continue our work toward becoming a more diverse and inclusive campus where all of our students can thrive and, most importantly, learn to support others to thrive. We will be talking more about our ongoing efforts in this area in the weeks to come.
I would be remiss if I didn’t offer one piece of advice to those new freshmen who will be living away from home for the first time. Call home! Your family misses you. In some cases, they have made a substantial investment of time, energy and resources for you to be here. So call them to say “Thanks.” Maybe stop in the U Store a few times this semester and pick up a “Thank You” card. You have no idea how much it would mean to your family to get a card with a handwritten note from you inside, instead of a one line text message. I’m also a mom; trust me, I know.
I am excited about the many opportunities for TU to realize its potential as the state’s fastest-growing university and the largest in the greater Baltimore region. I look forward to working with our alumni, partners, and supporters to build a better and stronger foundation to ensure our future success. There’s already much to be proud of at Towson University, and there are great things ahead.