My thanks to the 530 of you who attended the All-University Awards Banquet last Friday. We have some truly exceptional faculty and staff and I never tire of seeing them recognized. My appreciation, too, to all of you who have shared your thoughts regarding the format changes. These have been overwhelmingly positive. Above all, my utmost appreciation to everyone who worked to make this affair a success and all those recognized who make this university successful for our students. Pictured: Basil Clark, professor of English, and Hong Park, professor of Economics, recognized for 40 years of service to the University.
Apparently all it takes to get lots of positive press for our alumni is for me to send Jim Dwyer, executive director of alumni relations, to Saudi Arabia. (In truth, Jim actually is doing important work to build alumni relationships there. Don’t tell him I said so.) Here are a few I saw on my Twitter feed. Follow me at @SVSUPrez.
We continue to receive solid support from our corporate friends. Consumers Energy recently contributed $5,000 to support the Great Lakes Bay Hispanic Leadership Institute, which is coordinated by Monica Reyes, associate director of our Center for Business and Economic Development. Last year, Consumers Energy made a $50,000 gift to support our engineering programs and the Marshall Fredericks Sculpture Museum. My appreciation to them and all the organizations across the Great Lakes Bay Region for their generosity toward SVSU.
There are so many wonderful events and activities this time of year. I make it to as many as I can. Monday night, staff in Residential Life and elsewhere did a fine job organizing the annual Pros vs. Joes basketball game to raise funds for the Abou Traore scholarship fund. Tomorrow night brings the Student Life awards. Last weekend, students and staff in Student Wellness Programs hosted the regional BACCHUS Initiatives of NASPA conference, bringing 84 students and advisers from 15 different institutions to our campus. This national network provides student leaders and professional staff with the tools, skills, and resources to conduct evidence-based programs on campus to improve health and safety. SVSU is recognized as a leader in peer health education efforts, and this is yet another way for us to distinguish ourselves and make a positive impression.
The weather has finally improved and we all want to enjoy it. Students – and probably more than a few of you – are feeling end-of-the-year stress. Meanwhile, it can seem as though calendars are overflowing with events and your daily schedule is a juggling act. Please support our students and our colleagues through your attendance when and where you can. It often means more than you know. That said, we all must know our limits and balance our responsibilities. For example, I myself have commitments out of town that will prevent me from attending the Diane Boehm Writing Center dedication Friday; the spring football game, baseball and softball games and Cardinal Cabaret auction – all Saturday; and these are just the examples that leap to mind. The bottom line is this: the pressures of this time of year are many. Please remain devoted to our students. As you weigh your own competing demands, please keep this foremost in your thoughts. If each of us does so, we all will be the better for it.