This month marks one year since I was first announced as president of the University of Southern Maine. To say it has been one of the most exciting and fulfilling times of my life would be an understatement. My husband Michael and I have been so warmly welcomed. We are both humbled by the extraordinary people we have met, the strong commitment many have to our University, and the incredible potential of USM to transform lives and be a critical change agent in our region and beyond.
One of my greatest joys over this past year has been getting to know our students. Michael and I have attended sporting events, arts and theatre events, and other student activities. One of our great joys is having students at the President’s House for dinners and special receptions. These moments allow us to learn more about where our students come from, what their experiences are like at USM, and what their hopes are. I am continually impressed by the talent, vision, and excellence I see in our students, and I find inspiration in the promise and commitment they bring to our community. One of the reasons I wanted to be president at the University of Southern Maine is because of the service promise of “student focused every day,” and I have consistently witnessed this commitment throughout the year. I am proud of the dedicated faculty and staff who intentionally create educational opportunities for our students, and I am humbled to see so many extend themselves in extraordinary ways to ensure our students’ needs are met. I am also grateful to the many friends of our University who support scholarships and other philanthropic efforts that make a USM education possible.
Michael and I have also enjoyed traveling throughout the great state of Maine. We find this place, our new home, to be so beautiful. We enjoy the rocky coasts, the sandy beaches, and the lakes, mountains, and trees. We plan to spend some time throughout the summer exploring areas we have not been able to visit yet.
As this semester, and my first year as your president, comes to a close, please know I am committed to your continued success and the future of our university. I invite you to reach out to me any time with your observations, stories, and suggestions as we work to ensure our community is a place where everyone can thrive and do their very best work.
Have a wonderful summer!