Dear Alumni and Friends,
What a wonderful beginning to the 2017-2018 academic year it has been! On Aug. 25, we welcomed more than 200 new freshmen to campus, among the largest classes in our 84-year history. And what a joy to have you newly ordained priests with ties to Newman concelebrate our annual Mass of the Holy Spirit on Aug. 31 with Bishop Carl A. Kemme, Trustee Father Michael Simone, and our own Fathers John Fogliasso and Joseph Gile. You can read more about this wonderful occasion in this issue.
Among the new students enrolled at Newman this fall are seven young men who are discerning a vocation to the priesthood in the new St. Joseph House of Formation program. We are very excited about this latest partnership between the Catholic Diocese of Wichita and Newman University. The men are living in the former St. Joseph rectory with the program director, Father Simone and novice director Father Chad Arnold. They are taking general education and theology courses at Newman that will lead to an Associate of Arts degree, with Fr. Joe Gile serving as their advisor. You can read more about this new venture in this issue.
The new Bishop Gerber Science Center was completed in time for the beginning of the fall semester — and we finished under budget! What a fabulous facility Dondlinger Construction has built, working with the terrific plans created by RDG architects and our faculty. And the adjacent nursing and allied health spaces that were renovated last year in Eck Hall now create a seamless, state-of-the-art experience for our science and health sciences students.
Of course, these new and renovated facilities were made possible through gifts to the Facing Forward campaign. We are so grateful to all of the donors who made gifts large and small in support of this effort. Thank you for honoring Bishop Emeritus Eugene Gerber, and terrific faculty like Dr. Surendra Singh, Margaret Knoeber, ASC, and JoAnn Mark, ASC, with your gifts. We appreciate, also, the generosity from foundations and businesses that viewed their gifts as great investments in our community.
I can’t help but end with the wonderful news we received in August of our 10-year reaffirmation of accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission. Newman University achieved a major milestone by receiving superior reviews on all criteria regarding mission, integrity, academic quality, assessment and financial stability. The result is that we got to choose the option of an open pathway that will allow us “the opportunity to pursue improvement projects that meet (our) current needs and aspirations” for the next 10 years. This is a first for Newman University!
At this start of my 11th year with Newman, it remains a great privilege to serve with the dedicated faculty, staff and board members who made this “happy new year” possible. And, as always, we rely on the Providence of God and our sponsors the Adorers of the Blood of Christ, whose prayers and faith truly nurture and sustain Newman University.
Lastly, thank you for being a part of our Newman family — for your support, your prayers and all that you do to help our community.
Noreen M. Carrocci, Ph.D. President
Caritas Christi Urget Nos!