I want to quickly extend my thanks to the over 300 members of our full-time faculty who joined me at the Lake Shore Campus this past Sunday, September 22nd, for the 7th annual Faculty Convocation. I believe this was the first time in 7 years that our afternoon convocation did not compete for attention and enthusiasm with a Chicago Bears game. In fact, my strategy for the afternoon was to speak quickly so that those so inclined could get home in time for the 7:30 kickoff! But in all seriousness, I know that those who attended had many other commitments on what was a beautiful fall weekend and I value the time that they devoted to the annual gathering at which we welcome new faculty and recognize the achievements of our colleagues.
Convocation was also the occasion to point out that we have a new faculty and staff lounge to celebrate–Sky Lounge—on the first floor of Mundelein Center, the building in which the Convocation program took place. A year ago, I implied that the lounge would open soon and I regret that it took a full year to complete my promise. But it has become one my best spaces for interacting with faculty over a cup of coffee, lunch, or even a beverage during the 4-6 pm community hours. This coming year my office is sponsoring a monthly community hour with invitations to faculty in every department and school. That means it will take me all year to complete my other promise of buying the first drink for the faculty, but I’ll get there.
Over the next few weeks I plan to share on this blog some key items that I presented at the Convocation, including a summary of the progress made on goals I discussed at last September’s Convocation; some of the current initiatives underway; and an outline of our goals for the next year and beyond. Be sure to watch for these in my blog posts!