Just as we were going to press with this issue of the magazine, I received word that Hobart and William Smith Colleges were given special notice on the first President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll announced by President George W. Bush. The recognition comes in acknowledgement of extraordinary volunteer efforts by the Colleges and its students in service to the Geneva area and to Gulf Coast communities devastated by Hurricane Katrina. I am proud of our students for their commitment and actions. It takes an incredible amount of teamwork to achieve the more than 32,000 hours of service that were provided last year in the Geneva area and, since January, the 9,000 hours students have invested to clean up New Orleans. Students are working together to make a difference in our community and in the country at large.
But it's not just students collaborating. I'm seeing teamwork at the heart of more and more HWS initiatives. Faculty, staff, alumni, alumnae, parents and students are collaborating on books covering subjects as broad as war and poetry. Research at the Finger Lakes Institute and in laboratories across campus involves the efforts of dozens of individuals working to better our environment, explore scientific mysteries, and find cures for diseases. More than a dozen community members worked together to create our new minor in Peace Studies. Still more are laboring together every day to orchestrate competitive internship opportunities. Their enthusiasm and success is chronicled in each issue of this magazine.
That enthusiasm is spreading. Over the past year, we've had more people return to campus than ever before to attend events like Reunion, Parents Weekend and 'HWS-CSI.' In September, we accepted our largest classes from one of the most selective admissions cycles in our history.
HWS pride can also be seen in the number of people who attended our two 'Campaign for the Colleges' launch parties, the first at New York City's Jazz at Lincoln Center in September and the second here on campus in November. It wasn't just the sheer volume of those attending that was so amazing; it was the infectious excitement they showed when discussing the growth of the Colleges and the outlook for our future. Collective confidence in the Colleges is at the heart of advance giving to the campaign, which now totals more than $94 million toward our goal of $160 million.
This is an extraordinary time at Hobart and William Smith. As we enter the public phase of the campaign and as we celebrate the Centennial of William Smith College, I invite you to return to campus or to attend one of the many events we have planned across the country. I am confident that you, too, will share our pride in today's Hobart and William Smith.
All my best,
Mark D. Gearan
An Extraordinary Time
Fall 2006 Pulteney St. Survey