Dear faculty, staff and students,
The last couple of weeks have been punctuated with several celebrations, many of which have brought large parts of the campus together. I feel fortunate to have played a part in many of these events.
Two Sundays ago I was honored to speak to our football players and their families at the team’s annual awards ceremony. As I made my brief remarks, I let the team know that their home games were an integral part of my initiation into Hiram this fall. Those games, and their pre- and post-game activities, provided a venue for me to meet with a number of friends and fans of the College. It seems fitting then that I join the players and their families as we celebrated the highlights of their successful .500 season – many of which I witnessed personally from the edge of my stool in the president’s box.
The campus also participated in a number of noteworthy events to celebrate the words and wisdom of Dr. Martin Luther King. Thanks to the Social Justice Warriors, the African American Students United Organization, and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, faculty, staff, and students had plenty of opportunities to engage each other in important conversations.
Last week, faculty and staff also gathered for an employee recognition ceremony. There, in the Kennedy Center Ballroom, we honored individuals who celebrated landmark service years. It was special for me to read the names of colleagues who had crossed that five-year threshold, but by the time I had made my way up to Barb Vober, who is celebrating her 40th year, I was blown away. I was also honored to introduce the winners of several distinguished faculty and staff awards. These winners were selected by a “jury of their peers” to receive the various recognitions at hand.
Finally, we held our first Spring ’15 meeting of the College Executive Steering Committee (CESC) last Tuesday. It was the first meeting where the full membership was present as our newly elected staff representatives and staff chairperson were able to join us at the table. It is my expectation that the newly expanded CESC will streamline the committee structure on campus while serving as a proactive advisory committee to the president.
As you may have already noticed, many of our Board of Trustees members have arrived to campus today. If you see them walking around and making their (cold) way to a meeting, please introduce yourself to them. I know they enjoy meeting the people who are Hiram College. These next three days of BOT meetings will be filled with important conversations. And as I did last time, I will be updating you on the pertinent parts of our meeting so that you can continue to shape the future that all of us are working hard to build.
Lori E. Varlotta