by Stephanie Balmer, vice president for enrollment, marketing and communications and dean of admissions
With regular decision notification just a few weeks ago, the campus energy is high as we welcome admitted applicants to the class of 2018 for visits and revisits, along with high-school sophomores and juniors as they begin their college searches. Current students have returned from spring break and are enjoying the opportunities that a full spring schedule brings in terms of academic and co-curricular commitments.
Seniors are learning of graduate and professional school acceptances and are receiving job offers, and our first-years, sophomores and juniors are planning internships and study abroad. Our athletics teams are enjoying exceptional seasons. At the end of the winter season, Dickinson is ranked No. 30 in the Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup—our highest ranking ever. Momentum is high!
I have thought of our graduating seniors—the class of 2014—and their parents regularly over the last several weeks in particular, as they chose Dickinson in the spring of 2010. It was less than two years following the 2008 economic downturn, yet they were confident that the investment in a Dickinson education would provide them the platform to succeed not just in a career, but over a lifetime. I am simply in awe as I continue to hear of the opportunities that our students are earning, and I am deeply proud as we celebrate them.
The gains the college has made, despite an increasingly competitive higher-education landscape, have enhanced Dickinson’s reputation as a national leader in sustainability and global education. Our world-class faculty, academic program and facilities continue to motivate prospective students to consider and choose Dickinson. Our prospective students and their families will continue to come from our local and regional markets, yet more of them will hail from beyond the Northeast—and from around the world.
Recruiting and enrolling a diverse student population is a necessity for Dickinson to remain a living laboratory and to provide students the skills that will be expected of them as they anticipate their lives beyond college. It is imperative that Dickinson remains financially accessible to students and their families. As families consider the sacrifices they may have to make to educate their children, our college must remain committed to funding need-based financial assistance to ensure all students have the opportunity to benefit from the strength of a Dickinson education.
Building on the momentum of the February launch of the new, dynamic Web site and other initiatives, Dickinson will continue to highlight the distinctive assets that make us Dickinson. Our marketing reach will continue to grow, and with more than 23,000 Dickinsonians supporting our efforts, the college’s reputation will become even stronger.
It has been such a privilege to serve as vice president and dean over the last six years and to be a part of this special community. In July, my husband, Lauren, daughter, Isabel, and I will move to Nashville, Tenn., where I will become head of school at Harpeth Hall School. My affection and respect for colleagues in the Division of Enrollment, Marketing & Communications could not be greater, as it has been a joy and a privilege to work with them.
To my friends and colleagues among trustees, faculty, staff, alumni and parents, thank you for your commitment to excellence. To our students, thank you for your stories, your strength and for every delight and surprise you have brought me. Your impact on this campus and beyond gives me great satisfaction, and I will always be grateful for the work we have done together to advance Dickinson.
Read more from the spring 2014 issue of Dickinson Magazine.
Published Apr. 22, 2014