emoment with carl

As I walk around the College’s campus, enjoy concerts, use the High Library, see the results of experiments students do with their faculty mentors, and listen to recent graduates tell me excitedly about their new jobs, I think of all the hands and lives that have shaped the education that we offer. The building in which I work was built in 1900. I assure you, it has been refurbished many times over the decades. Small gifts of dollars and cents from many humble people helped build Alpha Hall, named appropriately, Alpha meaning the first, since it was the first, and for many years, the only building on campus. Many other buildings on campus bear the name of someone or a family that gave to the College because they, like those humble pioneers, believed in our mission of shaping the lives of young people with purpose.


Every year, our athletic teams, clubs, and student organizations hold fundraisers to support their activities. Many of their classmates, faculty, and staff members support them by buying products or pledging an amount for a run, walk, or raffle. (I support as many groups’ efforts as I can; if the fundraisers are selling anything chocolate, they know I’m buying.) Even greater efforts every year go into supporting the College’s teaching, facilities, programs, and outreach. Why do we give? Because, just like those pioneers over a century ago whose small gifts of dollars and cents built Alpha Hall, we know that everything worth doing depends on our collective effort, all of our hands and lives working together, to shape the future. Nelson Mandela, the former President of South Africa, put it well: “Education is the most powerful weapon we have to change the world.”  Thank you to all of the generations of Blue Jays, their families, and friends who have given us so much in order to make what the College is today a reality. Thank you, too, for giving us the opportunity to make an even brighter future for the College and for all of the students whose lives we shape. 

Thanks to the generosity from those who give to support the College's academic endeavors, our students develop skills and abilities that give them both career goals and purpose. 

Enjoy the moment,

Carl J. Strikwerda,
President


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Elizabethtown College
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