Welcome to the 2018-19 academic year, Wesleyan’s 187th! For me, it feels like the summer has flown by, and during the last few months lots of Wesleyan folks have been doing great things: our staff and teachers participated in the first-ever Center for Prison Education graduation; students and faculty conducted research on campus and at far-flung locations while also giving back to the Middletown community by leading the annual Girls in Science Summer Camp and the Kindergarten Kickstart intensive pre-K program; and our facilities staff worked tirelessly over the summer to complete nearly 100 projects.
It’s a particular pleasure to welcome the Class of 2022, 26 new ongoing faculty, and 45 visiting faculty. We’ve also had many changes in administration. My new chief of staff, David Chearo, starts this week; Key Nuttall and Andy Tanaka join Provost Joyce Jacobsen as senior vice presidents, which means they will help to coordinate work on a variety of projects across departments. We hope to have news before long on a new head of Human Resources, and soon we will be putting together the search committee for the vice president for equity and inclusion.
Our sports teams had a spectacular year last year, and they will start competing again this week. Homecoming kicks off October 19. We’ll be playing Amherst in football, men’s and women’s soccer, and field hockey, while the volleyball team has a full weekend of matches (the crew teams will be on the Charles River). And there are lots of contests between now and then in many more sports.
There’s so much happening in the arts! Each year I look forward to Wesleyan’s fall music festival, The MASH, which this year will take place on September 8. Be sure to check out the first solo exhibition in New England by St. Louis-based multimedia artist Kahlil Robert Irving: “Street Matter — Decay & Forever/ Golden Age.” It begins September 26 in the Zilkha Gallery.
We expect a Wesleyan education to prepare students for a lifetime of civic engagement. An opportunity for engagement comes on Election Day, November 6, and you can find information about registering to vote here.
I am looking forward to a great academic year, and I wish everyone all the best as we get underway!