This college is a work in progress, an institution that values its traditions even as it eagerly anticipates its next innovation.Westminster balances continuity and change. In this issue of the Review, we commemorate both.
In one case, we mark a sad change.We mourn the loss of a dear friend and patron, Vieve Gore. But we also celebrate her life.We are enormously grateful for her longstanding devotion to the college and the impact she has had on the lives of so many of our students.
We also are witness to happier changes on our campus: new buildings, new faculty, and new programs. These initiatives are signs of our evolution, our growth, and our aspiration to become a nationally recognized community of learners. Still, these changes do not alter our historic mission or our traditional commitment: to focus on our students, as individuals, and to do everything we can to support their learning and personal growth. Change and continuity.
Alumni may return to this campus and be surprised: they will see buildings that did not exist when they were here; they will meet faculty who are new to campus and teaching in programs that were not offered in their day; they may see students dress and hear them talk in ways that seem alien. But they will also see—now or a hundred years from now—the same intellectual vitality that characterized their time here as students and the same passionate commitment to make this an institution which helps every student achieve his or her full potential. Continuity and change.
In this issue of the Review, we interview Jean Dyer, our new Dean of the School of Nursing and Health Sciences, who demonstrates our longstanding commitment to helping students become caring professionals.We talk to Dean Janet Dynak about the efforts of the School of Education to adapt to real world needs and develop programs that respond to the changing reality of primary and secondary education in America.We have a story about Cid Seidelman who came to Westminster years ago as a young and slightly rebellious faculty member in economics, and who has just been promoted to the position of provost and vice president for academic affairs.
We also highlight our new Health,Wellness, and Athletic Center, currently under construction. This magnificent building is not being built simply to serve our nursing students and to give our athletic teams a place to practice and play. Rather, it is designed to provide multiple ways for the entire campus to improve their fitness and health and to enjoy themselves at the same time. In that way, it is symbolic of the entire culture of our campus—an active, engaged, involved place where people learn, develop, and succeed.
Next month we will celebrate the 130th class to graduate from Westminster College. The wonderful thing about our students is that, even after they graduate, they retain an attachment to this place and to each other. They remain a part of our community long after they have graduated because their experiences here have convinced them that Westminster is special, and that they are part of the college’s history and tradition.
Continuity and change: those twin concepts, those merged realities, define Westminster just as they define life beyond this special college.
Michael S. Bassis