Dear Friends,


Interim President Patrick A. McGuire L.H.D. ’12,
accompanied by his wife Sandy McGuire, shakes
hands with Anu Shree Rajagopal ’22 upon her
arrival to campus.

For more than 50 years, it has been my good fortune to be a member of the Hobart and William Smith community. The things that attracted me to the Colleges in 1968 – the boundless potential of our students, the intellectual agility and deep commitment of our faculty, the beauty of our lakeside campus, and the accomplishments and fortitude of our alumni and alumnae – remain our greatest assets. This is a place that inspires us to be our best selves and that rewards us with an education and friendships that shape the trajectory of our lives. In the 50 years since my arrival, these gifts have not changed, and it is my assessment that today the Colleges are in a position of strength.

That strength was evident as we began the academic year with Convocation, a tradition so deeply rooted in the fabric of the Colleges that neither a heat advisory nor rain could deter us. In the Vandervort Room of Scandling Campus Center, a standing room only crowd was captivated by the keynote address of Margarita Ramos ’85, who spoke passionately about finding one’s voice, using it to make a difference, and leading a life of consequence. Our student trustees, Caitlin Lasher ’18 and Gavin Gross ’18, gave fantastic speeches about the challenges and rewards of traveling abroad and testing one’s boundaries. Delivering the faculty address was Associate Professor of Media and Society Leah Shafer, whose speech on individuality and the pleasures of learning demonstrated quite clearly why she is the recipient of the 2018 faculty prize for teaching. There was a spirit in the room of optimism and conviction.

This issue of the Pulteney Street Survey confirms the confidence we all shared during Convocation. In the pages that follow, some of our esteemed graduates share who they are, what they are curious about, where their ideas have taken them, and how they are using their expertise to change the world. There are updates on the national recognition the Colleges have received in recent weeks for study abroad, community service, return-on-investment and top-rated faculty. There are stories about our remarkable students and faculty, a fascinating piece authored by Professor of Physics Donald Spector about curiosity, and updates on our outstanding athletics teams. This issue is a reminder of what a remarkable place Hobart and William Smith is. So, when Chair of the Board of Trustees Thomas S. Bozzuto ’68, L.H.D. ’18 asked me to serve as interim president following the resignation of Dr. Gregory J. Vincent ’83 in April, I was deeply humbled. To be able to give back to a place that means so much to me and continue the strong legacy of past presidencies is a great honor. I am grateful to Greg for his advice and counsel during the transition. Since taking on the presidency in April, I have spoken with former students, current students, parents and colleagues who share my enthusiasm and love for the Colleges, and who have pledged their support of our efforts moving forward. I thank you all most sincerely for your loyalty and commitment. It means the world to me.

To be sure, we have work ahead of us as we recruit a new president and a new cohort of students, as we educate and mentor the excellent students already on our campus, and as we increase engagement among alums and parents. But it’s work at which we will thrive.


McGuire signature

Patrick A. McGuire L.H.D. ’12
Interim President


Preparing Students to Lead Lives of Consequence.