Welcome back and Happy 2018! It’s going to be another exceptional year at Marietta College. I hope you had a great Winter Break and you are ready for an exciting spring semester. We enjoyed many accomplishments during the fall semester, and we will continue to Bring Forth a Pioneer this spring.
As we begin another semester, I want to take a moment to share with you some of the amazing things that are taking place at Marietta College.
On Friday, February 2nd and Saturday, February 3rd, we will celebrate the annual Winter Weekend, which includes inducting five members into the Athletic Hall of Fame. The 35th class includes Loren “Jack” Vultee ’68 (rowing), Dawn Karbler ’97 (women’s soccer), Mike Deegan ’01 (baseball), Kristen Quintana ’07 (softball) and Jason Vrable ’07 (football). We are also honored that John Langel ’70, retired partner of Philadelphia law firm Ballard Spahr, will be the keynote speaker. Mr. Langel represented several major sports figures over the years, and he also played a key role in establishing more lucrative contracts for U.S. Women’s Soccer and U.S. Women’s Hockey.
After two amazing performances in the fall, the Esbenshade Series returns at 7:30 p.m., February 8th with J.D. Vance, author of The New York Times’ bestseller, Hillbilly Elegy. The program is free and open to the public in the Dyson Baudo Recreation Center, thanks to the generosity of the Esbenshade Family. However, we are limited to just 400 tickets. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and that is when you can get a ticket.
On February 15th, the College will celebrate its 183rd birthday, but this year the Office of Academic Affairs is changing things up a bit, and we plan to have a party from 4:30-7:00 p.m.
I’ll be heading out to Florida later this week with VP for Advancement Angie Anderson to meet with alumni and donors as we discuss the future of Marietta College. Our alumni and donors continue to be amazing partners of the College. Our fundraising efforts continue to be on an upswing as we had raised more than $11 million in gifts and pledges by December 31st — more than all of 2016-17 when we raised $10.2 million. No one will rest, though, and we can’t wait to see how much more our alumni and donors invest in Marietta’s future this year.
We continue working hard to implement standard and best practices in the recruitment of talented new students. This fall, we visited more high schools and participated in more college fairs than the previous year, and met with thousands of interested prospective students, their parents and high school counselors. The Offices of Enrollment Management and Communication & Brand Management continue to work in concert to create new publications and emails, and enhance our digital presence and reinforce our value and brand recognition. With the support of our outstanding faculty and staff, we are implementing strategies that make a difference not only in student recruitment, but also in student retention and success at Marietta College. These efforts are paying off as we have surpassed our total number of applications, and admitted students that we had for the fall class of 2017, for the entire year. Deposits are also significantly ahead of last year. There is more work to do, but we are making progress in re-establishing Marietta as a wonderful option for our current — and future — classes of new Pioneers.
At the Monday, January 15th Faculty Meeting, the Music Therapy major was approved. This is exciting news as we have completed renovations on a new space in the McKinney Building and we continue to see interest from current and prospective students about the new major.
This weekend, eight Marietta College students will perform with the honor bands during the Ohio Private College Instrumental Conductors Association Honor Band Festival at The College of Wooster. Those participating are Sadie Johnson ’20, Ryan McGuinness ’21, Dillon Shoulders ’21, Rongjia Tang ’21, Jonah Litman ’18, Alfonso Ramirez ’21, Anqi Shi ’20 and Lauren Eakle ’20.
Starting on Sunday, January 21st, three McDonough Leadership scholars will be partaking in the U.S. Naval Academy Leadership Conference in Annapolis, Maryland. The student participants are Emily Brown ’19, Ashley Olszewski ’20 and Ryan VanMeter ’20.
And, many of you may have watched on the College’s Snapchat account how seven of our students gained valuable experience in sports marketing as they worked at the Boca Raton Bowl in Florida. Liz Nedved ’20, Hunter Gallagher ’18, Kristina LaRocca ’18, Brett Mattson ’18, Jack Hirschfield ’20, Brandon Larsen ’20 and Gavin Linkous ’21 assisted with all aspects of the bowl game, including pep rallies, fan engagement activities and many other activities during the bowl game.
Success in Athletics
Both the men’s and women’s basketball teams have spent the majority of the 2017-18 season in the D3hoops.com Top 25 rankings. The women are currently ranked No. 19 with a 14-1 record, while the men are 18th with a 12-3 record. Recently, senior guard Dillon Young ’18 became the 32nd men’s basketball player to eclipse 1,000 career points. I know he has plenty more to add to his total before his Marietta career is complete.
In football, Marietta’s Roger Walker ’18 competed in The Dream Bowl on Monday in Salem, Virginia, as a member of the Crusaders. Roger showed everyone in attendance why he was a first-team All-American this fall as he scored a touchdown. Congratulations on a great career.
As we begin a new year, we also launch a new partnership with Washington State Community College. The two institutions entered into a Dual Admission agreement that will create a high-quality, affordable option for students pursuing their undergraduate degrees. There is also a second element to the agreement that is equally thrilling for Marietta College. Starting this semester, students at Washington State can live in our residence halls and take advantage of meal plans and other services.
I look forward to seeing you on campus, and here’s to a great 2018!
Bring Forth a Pioneer!
President and Professor of Management