Monday Moments with President Bergman: May 13, 2019

Gustavus President Rebecca M. Bergman shares her thoughts with College employees each week.
Posted on May 13th, 2019 by

President Rebecca M. Bergman

Last weekend, amidst the hustle and bustle of Honors Day, I hurried along the sidewalk outside the administration building. Head down, I ran through a mental checklist of events for the day — Honors Convocation, the Magnuson Award Luncheon, Books in Bloom, the Senior Honors Music Recital, oh, and an evening plane to catch on the way to Stockholm.

“Hello, President Bergman!” I snapped out of my trance. Looking up, I saw a student smiling at me. “It’s a beautiful day!” Returning the greeting as we passed, I fully took in the scenery for the first time. It was truly a perfect day on the hill — it was warm and sunny and the grass shone that brilliant green that only seems to happen on a few days each spring.
Down the way, I could see the faculty gathering outside of Christ Chapel. Wearing their academic robes, they greeted each other and smiled in the sun as they prepared to celebrate the accomplishments of their students and colleagues. Behind me, I could hear students welcome their families to campus, hugging and laughing as they walked down Eckman Mall.
I was reminded on that perfect Saturday of the Gustavus tradition of “Hello Walk.” In the early days of the College’s history, when Old Main was the primary academic building with a few halls scattered on either side of it on top of the hill, nearly everyone would walk down just one sidewalk in the morning and evening, saying “Hello” as they went.
“Hello Walk…” the 1957¬†Gustavian¬†yearbook says, “is the basis upon which enduring friendships are laid, tradition is born and nurtured, and a college is formed.”
This is a busy time, with celebrations and meetings and last-minute things to do before we send our graduates off into the world. This week, let’s make every sidewalk “Hello Walk.” As you walk across campus, put a big smile on your face and engage with the community around you by saying “Hello” to everyone you meet.
We are building something special here at Gustavus. Let us never get too busy to remember the students that we’re building it for, and the colleagues that we’re building it with.
Yours in community,
Becky
 

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