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FROM THE PRESIDENT
August 16, 2010
My recent triennial presidential review afforded me the opportunity to assess the goals we have reached together s ince my presidency began in 2007. Community members and the broader campus population continually cited steady progress toward excellence as the greatest accomplishment of Shepherd's faculty, staff, and students during this period.
Excellence is an overused word, too easy to claim, more difficult to measure. If we view excellence as a journey rather than a destination, we can chart our progress as steady steps to improvement. We can set goals and strive to attain them. One such goal clearly signifying excellence was Shepherd's decision to pursue membership in COPLAC (Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges). That goal, now achieved, opens up a new journey for us toward becoming even better stewards of our students' educational experience. We've gained 25 peers to aspire to be like, with their high graduation rates, solid retention, generous funding, and well-established reputations. We will learn much from these peers that will shape Shepherd's future--stay tuned!
The new RBA Today program, outlined in this issue, is another initiative that moves Shepherd along the path to excellence. The Regents Bachelor of Arts program is designed for working adults who had to abandon their college careers before completing their bachelor's degrees. I ask that alumni spread the word to former classmates and co-workers who didn't complete their baccalaureate degree that the RBA Today program provides just the sort of flexibility that working adults seek when completing their degree.
Nowhere is Shepherd's progress toward excellence more evident than Shepherd's Create the Future fundraising campaign. In just a year and a half after the public announcement of the campaign, we are nearing our ambitious goal that we set for our first major campaign initiative. This success is clearly due to the generosity of Shepherd's alumni and donors who have continued to support the University even during the current economic downturn. You believe, as we do, that your gifts to the Create campaign for academic program support, student scholarships, endowed positions and faculty enhancement, and renovation and new construction will help Shepherd in its journey toward excellence.
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