MAY 14

COVID-19 Information

COVID-19 vaccines now available to all groups in PA. Let LVC know when you are fully vaccinated. Students are required to fill out the Symptom Tracker every day.

Dear Colleagues,

I hope you are off to a great start in the New Year. My thanks to all colleagues who worked through the winter break on facilities projects, campus safety, and insuring the security of our few student residents during that period. My thanks to all for preparing the College for the semester ahead.

Spring 2020 will be an exciting time for all of us. For me, this will be my last at LVC, so I am eager to finish all that I can and enjoy the second half of the academic year. I want to call everyone’s attention to the seventh Symposium on Inclusive Excellence, which will take place next Tuesday, January 21.

The Symposium will begin at 10 a.m. in Miller Chapel with keynote speaker and performer Ruth Naomi Floyd. Ms. Floyd is a renowned vocalist, composer, flautist, and music educator. She is the director of jazz studies at Cairn University in Langhorne, Pa., and artist-in-residence at Temple University. Along with the keynote, Ms. Floyd will perform a concert at 7 p.m. in the Chapel. The concert is free and open to all.

Several major facilities improvements are in progress. Upgrades to Frock Conference Room and Leedy Theater are underway, supported by gifts from the Bishop and Leedy families, respectively. The new seats for Leedy Theatre were installed this week, and the space looks fantastic. Work has also begun to transform the Heilman Center into classrooms, labs, and a free community clinic for the Speech-Language Pathology Program. This project will greatly enhance the learning experience for students and benefit numerous members of our community. I am happy to report that the Pedestrian Bridge cleared final inspection. The ramps are now open and already being used; the lighting system makes the bridge safer and more attractive in the evenings; and finishing touches and adjustments are scheduled to be done soon. Fireworks are scheduled for the formal evening dedication of the bridge in April.
Regarding enrollment for next fall, Ed Wright reports some positive and some less positive indicators. Another successful enrollment year is certainly within our reach, but we must focus on bringing in additional applications and a robust yield of students who have already been admitted to the Class of 2024. Now through the summer, personal connections with admitted and enrolled students will be key to building a strong and successful first-year class.

Rick Beard and the athletics staff are developing a strategic plan to build on the successes of our teams by strengthening the integration of athletics with academic and other campus programs, incorporating innovative approaches, and providing high-quality facilities to our student-athletes and coaches. Additional details of the plan will be shared later this semester for comments and questions.

Monica Cowart reports a significant increase in inquiries to many of our graduate programs. Enrollment trends are, for most programs, tracking toward goals. Monica is working closely with faculty, academic affairs staff, and faculty governance committees to develop new graduate and undergraduate programs that will attract students in growth areas. We will announce the new programs as the faculty approves them.

Dr. Susan Tammaro, who joined LVC last summer as interim director of institutional research, has been appointed associate provost. In a reimagining of the director of institutional research position previously held by Jessica Ickes, Susan will continue to oversee institutional research initiatives. Also, she will coordinate operations related to the Registrar's Office and the academic success division as well as help coordinate our college-wide assessment strategy in preparation for Middle States. Her expertise in data and assessment and experience implementing best practices in student success will inform these new responsibilities. In this role, she serves as a member of the President’s Staff.

Retention numbers will not be final until the spring semester census on Friday, but fall-to-spring semester retention could be higher than it has been in the last five years. Retention continues to be an urgent priority requiring the attention of faculty and staff from across campus. We committed to our students when they arrived that we will do everything we can to help them succeed. Susan’s work will insure that we are coordinated and using every tool available to us for this purpose.

Some terrific news from advancement: In December, the College received a $1 million gift for an endowed scholarship from Valentino V. Sica ’50, M.D. Dr. Sica said he made the gift because he is grateful for how well his LVC education prepared him for his career as a physician, and he wanted to provide similar opportunities to today’s students.  Additionally, accomplished musician and educator Lois Brong Miller ’61 made a $100,000 gift to the College, and LVC received 50 new Vickroy Society gifts in the last month.

Best wishes for the semester. I look forward to seeing you at the Symposium and the many gatherings on the calendar for the spring.