As the weather began to break yesterday, bringing slightly lower temperatures, it was appropriate that the first groups of students arrived on campus to begin the new academic year. I must admit that seeing all these students got my adrenaline going in anticipation of an exciting fall semester. Football players, marching band members, cheerleaders, and resident assistants were among the early arrivals – all eager to begin practice and training.
I also took a tour of the campus yesterday, viewing the status of all the work and construction projects that have been underway this summer. The new residences, including the Greek houses, surrounding Sink Field look great and will be well received by the students as they arrive in the coming days. And the improvements made to the four oldest residence halls and the Trustees Building are nothing short of transformational. Our facilities, maintenance and housekeeping, and residential life staff deserve all the credit for a job well done. Thanks to suggestions from the “Wow Committee,” there are also banners, welcome signs, and other touches throughout the campus — all sending the message to our campus arrivals that we are glad they are back or coming to Methodist for the first time. We have also broken ground on our new Nursing Building which will open next summer.
Overall, the fall enrollment numbers look strong. Thanks to the Admissions Office’s efforts and the engagement of the entire campus community in our retention initiatives, it looks like we will have close to another record enrollment this year — again proving that Methodist is growing in its popularity. Signature people, programs, and facilities are attracting the best students to our campus. There is so much pride on the campus in what we have to offer students and others joining the community.
I look forward to having everyone back on campus and to classes starting in less than two weeks. The excitement and engagement of our students and faculty is truly something to witness first hand. It is no wonder that I believe I have the best job in America!