Monday (Tuesday!) Moments with President Bergman: May 28, 2019

Gustavus President Rebecca M. Bergman shares her thoughts with College employees each week.
Posted on May 28th, 2019 by

President Rebecca M. Bergman

As we prepare to celebrate the Gustavus Class of 2019 and send our graduates across the commencement platform and out into the world this Saturday, I have been reflecting on the lessons I want them to remember from their time on the hill.

I want them to remember what they learned in the classroom, of course—how to transpose music and calculate derivatives and deconstruct a text. More than that, however, I want them to remember how the people here taught them to make a difference, how to think critically, engage passionately, and act effectively.

This year, our theme has been Values in Action, and I am proud to say that I have seen it lived out across campus. Examples abound…here are just a few:  Excellence: Abby Trouth ’20 won a Goldwater Scholarship. Community: Give to Gustavus Day raised nearly half a million dollars last fall as alumni, parents, friends, and employees supported the Gustavus Fund. Justice: Our students elevated the conversation on environmental sustainability on our campus and beyond. Service: The Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) hosted a series of Special Olympics events throughout the year. Faith: Christmas in Christ Chapel highlighted our church-relatedness and incredible musical legacy to a national audience through a partnership with public television stations.

We have also made significant progress in executing the Gustavus Acts Strategic Plan. The faculty passed the framework for the new general education curriculum. We are moving forward on the development of the College’s first master’s degree program in athletic training. We successfully recruited a talented and diverse incoming class for next fall. We completed fundraising on the Nobel Hall of Science and will move into the new expansion in a few short weeks.

We have done good work, and we should be proud of the things we have accomplished. Our work, however, is not about accomplishing tasks, it is about developing people. Our work is done in community, with each other and for one another. It is about equipping our students to act on the great challenges of our time through an innovative liberal arts education of recognized excellence. It is about giving them a sense of community, a grounding in the liberal arts, and a place that they can always call home.

As our graduates walk across the stage on Saturday, know that you have shaped their journey. Your work, in big ways and small, has made their Gustavus experience special. You have made a difference. You have shown them the meaning of Values in Action. 

As students come and go, we uphold our mission, live out our values, and advance our vision. I am truly grateful for the work that you do.

With deep gratitude for a job well done,

Becky

 

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