2018 President’s Letter
Dear Friends of College of St. Joseph,
It is truly an honor to greet you as the seventh president of CSJ. I begin this journey with great enthusiasm, and with equal measures of faith, hope, and determination as we face the challenges that lie ahead, and work together to strengthen this wonderful institution.
Front and center, the past year has seen its share of struggles, culminating with the recent financial probation imposed by our accrediting institution. Though disappointing news, the announcement was not a surprise, given our very public financial struggles of late. My administration is facing this challenge head-on, and we are already taking aggressive steps to achieve compliance. It is also important to note that this status is exclusively a consequence of our financial resources. Our academic programs are not in question. CSJ remains a prominent provider of high quality academic programs and student-centered support services, with dedicated staff and exceptional faculty.
So let me focus on what we do really well, and share some of the high points of the last year:
- January 2018 brought the first J-Term to CSJ;
- Also in January 2018, CSJ launched Vermont’s first and only Traumatology Institute, with full accreditation from the Green Cross Academy of Traumatology. The CSJTI’s first certifications were awarded in March.
- Last fall CSJ introduced Varsity eSports, and in April unveiled a new eSports Arena for practice and competition. CSJ is the only local college to offer varsity e-Sports.
- In July, the Arts & Sciences Division announced two new Health Science majors. Beginning this fall, CSJ will offer a Pre-Med concentration and a Pre-Athletic Training concentration to the Bachelor of Science degree.
- Also during July, we announced a new Degree in Three accelerated Bachelor’s program, designed to save students and their families money and enter them into the workforce sooner.
- We enthusiastically welcome Vermont Actors’ Repertory Theatre to campus as our resident theater company during this academic year, bringing creative energy, artistic expression, and three wonderful productions to the student experience.
- This month we launched our new Online Store, with CSJ logoed apparel and every kind of gift and wearable. This is a new revenue stream for us.
- Our Provider Scholars completed nearly 5,000 hours of community service, reaching a milestone of 22,600 hours since the program began. This year, Provider transitions from Financial Aid to Academics, signaling the commitment we have to service-learning as well as to our Rutland County non-profit partners.
- We granted degrees to 74 graduates during the 59th Commencement ceremony.
- We have announced a bold, new, capital campaign with the purpose of rebuilding our endowment. ASCEND, the Campaign for CSJ is a multi-year philanthropic effort with the goal of increasing our endowment by 3.5 million. In doing so, the College would gain crucial new funds annually to support student scholarships and academic excellence, and restore our institutional resources.
As it always has, CSJ holds an essential place – in our community and its economic vision; in our state and its workforce development; in the arena of higher education and affordability; and particularly in the hearts of our students, whose lives are being transformed and futures re-imagined every day.
When I look to our future, I see three factors that will continue to distinguish and define this College – they are Affordability, Access, and Continuous Improvement. These factors go hand-in-hand with our mission, to educate men and women of varied faiths and backgrounds, for lives of continuing growth and service to community.
Thank you for being part of this wonderful community called College of St. Joseph.
Dr. Jennifer Scott