While visiting alumni and alumnae in Florida,
President Joyce P. Jacobsen and Vice President
for Advancement Bob O’Connor P‘22 met with
Rebecca Fox L.H.D. ’95 (center), former dean
of William Smith College and the current Dean
of the Division of Continuing and International
Education at the University of Miami.


Dear Friends,

I have had the privilege these past several months of traveling across the country to meet with a great number of alumni, alumnae, parents and friends of Hobart and William Smith, all of whom have expressed their support for the Colleges and their excitement for our future. I’m looking forward to meeting many more of you as my schedule takes me to Saratoga, Denver, Seattle, San Francisco and Boston in the next couple of months. Please join me at these celebrations of HWS and, as always, return to campus for Reunion 2020 from June 5 – 7. There’s no easier way to stay engaged and learn how you can be part of the Colleges’ future than by attending one of our events regionally or in Geneva.

Here on campus, there’s been noteworthy activity as I’ve finalized the leadership team at the Colleges, making important appointments in academics, athletics, inclusion, alumni and alumnae relations and the Hobart Dean’s Office, all described in detail on the following pages. With these appointments, we have resolved all interim and unfilled leadership positions, and clarified our administrative structures moving forward.

I’m pleased to report that with the significant efforts of many, including the guidance of the Board of Trustees, we are establishing a firm platform for the future with a renewed strategic planning process, an increased applicant pool and record-breaking philanthropy. I am grateful to so many of you who recommend the Colleges to prospective students and who have already made a gift to HWS, whether through planned giving, the annual fund or a targeted campaign like February’s Athletic Day of Donors.

All of this progress emerges from the foundation of the institution and the nearly 200 years of perseverance, tenacity and innovation that characterize the Colleges. In this issue of The Pulteney Street Survey, we investigate some of those foundations, taking a deeper look into the Seneca land on which the Colleges are built; profiling alumni and alumnae whose careers and lives intersect with concepts of foundations – literally and figuratively; and recounting the history of the Seneca Review on its 50th birthday.

As I continue on my #ExploreHWS journey for the academic year, I have finished visiting all of our buildings and outdoor areas and have shifted to learning more about the people and activities that populate them. Every day I learn something new and interesting about the Colleges, whether by attending thought-provoking academic events on campus, student performances, gallery exhibits and athletic contests or by interviewing interesting people through my podcast (see facing page for details).

My best wishes for a wonderful spring, and don’t hesitate to contact me with your thoughts about any matter regarding the Colleges.


Joyce P. Jacobsen signature

Joyce P. Jacobsen


Preparing Students to Lead Lives of Consequence.