Event Planning Office
In December, the Event Planning Office (EPO) staff moved from the Benson Memorial Center to the Walsh Administration Building, and is now part of the President’s Office staff. Karrie Grasser, Assistant Vice President of University Protocol and Events, and her team of Elizabeth Carter, Mary Johnson, Blake Malcolm and Stephanie Woitte, will continue to provide the University with event planning leadership, advisory support, and services that advance University-wide event development and production management. In the new organization, the EPO staff will continue to manage Undergraduate and Graduate Commencements, the Golden Circle Theatre Party, and staffing for the Board of Fellows. Since joining the President’s Office, they have taken on additional responsibilities including staffing for both the Board of Trustees and the Board of Regents.
The EPO staff is also tasked with developing a set of University-wide standards and protocol, which will help ensure that all events exhibit a level of consistency and quality showcasing Santa Clara’s excellence. Further details will be forthcoming as the team transitions to the new organization and their new duties. They are a welcome addition to the President’s Office, and I look forward to their continued support and assistance in University events across campus.
What's Ahead on My Calendar
- January 26-February 2 - Meetings and alumni event in Hong Kong
- February 7 - Men's Basketball v. St. Mary's
- February 8 - Board of Trustees Meeting
- February 9 - Golden Circle Theatre Party
- February 12 - State of the University
- February 13 - Ash Wednesday
- February 18 - President's Day
- February 22-23 - Family Weekend
- February 25 - Joint Meeting of California and Oregon Provinces on Higher Education
- February 26-27 - Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) Presidents Meeting
State of the University
Please join me for the annual State of the University address, which will be held on Tuesday, February 12, at 4:00 p.m. in the Mission Church. I invite and encourage you to attend the University-wide event as we gather as a community to reflect on past achievements, current opportunities and future plans for fulfilling our aspirations for Santa Clara University.
Michael E. Engh, S.J.
And Joseph too went up from Galilee from the town of Nazareth to Judea,
to the city of David that is called Bethlehem, …
to be enrolled with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child.
While they were there, the time came for her to have her child,
and she gave birth to her firstborn son.
- Luke 2: 4-7
Dear Members of the University Community,
This is the time of year when Christians celebrate the miraculous event of the birth of Jesus Christ to the Virgin Mary. The Gospels tell the familiar narrative of Joseph caring for his pregnant wife, of Mary giving birth to the Son of God, and of the shepherds journeying to the manger to pay homage to the newborn King.
We see in this image of a brave mother, a humble father and a helpless infant the images and life stories of people all around us. It is in the humanity of neighbors known and unknown where we can discover the face of God who sent Jesus to redeem the world. During this Christmas season we reflect on God’s great love for us and see it manifested in the lives of our own holy families and the holy family of all humanity.
Celebrated at this time also is the Jewish festival of lights, Hanukkah, which will take place December 9-16. Hanukkah commemorates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem after the Jews of Judah triumphed over their oppressors. For Jewish people around the world, these days recall the light of justice and peace that will triumph over the darkness of conflict and injustice.
In many faith traditions, light symbolizes the best of who we are and hope for blessings to come. This holiday season I pray that with your family and friends you experience the peace, joyful living and unconditional love that God wishes for all of us. May this also be a time for us to see the face of God in those who suffer illness, injustice, and economic insecurity, and to respond as members of the same family. At Christmas Mass, I shall remember the Santa Clara community, thanking God for all of you and asking God’s blessing now and throughout the new year.
With best wishes,
Michael E. Engh, S.J.
Board of Trustees Meeting Held
The Board of Trustees held their fall business meeting last week at a two-day offsite. Prior to the business meeting, the new trustees attended an orientation session to get an overview of key elements of the University – its Jesuit educational values and history, academic programs, financial overview, the fiduciary responsibility of the board members, and the fundraising plan for the University. The orientation is one of several ways that the University welcomes new trustees to the board and gives them a framework for understanding their roles and responsibilities as trustees.
At the opening reception, students involved with the Global Social Benefit Fellows program and the Frugal Innovation Lab held poster sessions for the trustees, sharing their experiences with these high-impact interdisciplinary projects. The GSB Fellows related their work with Solar Sister, a GSBI social enterprise that distributes solar lamps using Avon-style direct sale distribution network of women entrepreneurs in sub-Saharan Africa. Students from the Frugal Innovation Lab highlighted their projects that ranged from affordable water quality monitoring, solar energy distribution, and mobile platforms for vocal pattern analysis. The students and mentors were very well-received by the trustees.
During the business meeting, the trustees approved the Audit Report and received an update from the Campaign Planning Task Force, chaired by John A. Sobrato. The chairs of the various trustee committees reported out on the activities of their respective groups. Other reports included those by the Chair of the Board of Regents, Patti Boitano; President of the Faculty Senate, Barbara Molony; and President of the Associate Student Government, Jenna Saso.
A significant portion of the meeting comprised presentations and a breakout session about strategic issues. I provided the trustees with an update on the state of the University, and Provost Jacobs gave an overview of the University’s strengths, challenges and aspirations. Trustee Bill Leahy, S.J., President of Boston College, presented on the role of trustees as stewards, ambassadors and benefactors and how they can advance Santa Clara University. Father Leahy offered valuable insights from his experience with trustees at Boston College and the special contributions they make in strengthening the institution. Following the presentations, the members broke out into small groups to discuss institutional priorities and identify practices that will help trustees be more effective stewards of Santa Clara’s educational mission.