From the Chancellor: A Great Learning Opportunity

Dear Orange Friends:

A lot happens on the Syracuse campus on a typical day, and it is hard to take it all in. We have great faculty and a strong academic community, and that means a lot of people come here for visits, including from other universities. Sometimes our students, faculty, and community have an opportunity to see and interact with many of the best scholars in the world on a salient set of issues. That happens again this weekend, when our philosophy department hosts the Third Annual Workshop for Oxford Studies in Political Philosophy. The schedule of events is very impressive.

The conference includes ten workshops by renowned philosophers on compelling issues in government, politics, and democracy. One of the keynotes is by my former colleague Elizabeth Anderson of the University of Michigan, who will address equality issues, and who has had a transformative impact on the discipline. Other scholars come from Oxford, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the Australian National University, Cornell University, the University of Warwick, the London School of Economics and Political Science, Syracuse University, UCLA, Rice University, and Washington University in St. Louis, among others.

I encourage students, faculty, and friends to take advantage of this great learning opportunity.

Sincerely,

Kent Syverud
Chancellor Kent Syverud

From the Chancellor: Classroom Visits

Dear Orange Friends:

Last week I sat in at the back of a lot of classes, including Introduction to Managerial Accounting (Whitman); Race, Gender, and the Media (Newhouse); Principles of Instruction and Learning (Education); and Introduction to Family Development (Falk). I will be sitting in on other classes in all colleges over the course of the semester, and teaching my own course in negotiation to students from many schools.

It is asking a lot of a teacher to have the Chancellor (sometimes accompanied by the Dean) sit in the back of the class. I do this each year to remind myself forcefully of what a university is all about, and also because I learn a lot. I am deeply grateful to the students and to Professors Joyce Zadzilka, Charisse L’Pree, Tiffany Koszalka, and Matthew Mulvaney for welcoming me.

In each class, I saw an excellent and rigorous teacher who cares about the students. I saw teachers who worked hard to embody best practices—and those most effective in enabling learning—in what they do. Each class was both hard work and enjoyable.

It was also salutary for me to see how exhausting it can be to rush between four or five classes in one day. This entails a lot of travel as well as trying to keep track of multiple assignments, quizzes, texts, participation rules, and papers—as well as a host of Syracuse opportunities for extra activities (public lectures, symposia, concerts, films, student groups, etc.) that complement the subject of each course. Often when I am responsible for one course, I can forget sometimes that my students are juggling so much more.

Sincerely,

Kent Syverud
Chancellor Kent Syverud

From the Chancellor: Campus Improvements

Dear Orange Friends:

I am deeply grateful to a large group of Syracuse people who, over the course of the summer, worked hard to improve the physical infrastructure of our campus. There were times this summer when it was difficult to walk ten feet without dodging a construction project, but the results are impressive.

I encourage you, in particular, to check out:

  • The new courtyard and landscaping at Watson Hall, which is a much more interesting and pleasant place to be. Last year’s residents of Watson helped with the design ideas, inspiring an outdoor space that includes a paver patio area, plantings, sidewalks and a gas fire pit. Tables, chairs and benches are coming soon.
  • The Mount Olympus stair landing. As part of the two-year Sims Drive reconstruction project, spanning from Comstock Avenue to Forestry Drive, the previously covered bottom portion of the Mount Olympus stairs has been replaced with a new open landing. The new landing features granite steps, brick paver landings and a teak bench seating area. Heating in the steps, landings and sidewalks will ensure snow- and ice-free passage in winter, and a new covering structure over the main landing will be installed in September.
  • The dramatic new entrance to Shaw Hall on Euclid Avenue. This marks the completion of four summers of renovation. The entrance creates better flow and allows residents access to a new lounge, central recreation space and laundry. The ground level also includes a meeting room for the STEM Learning Community and team rooms for small group work or collaborative study. Shaw’s original elevator has been modernized to stop at all levels, and two new elevators were added as part of this project.
  • Sadler Hall’s student rooms, lounges and public areas. In all student rooms the built-ins, furniture and room doors have been replaced. All finishes have been upgraded throughout the residence hall with new flooring and fresh paint schemes. The lobby and main lounge have been completely renovated and the card access entry process is more straightforward.
  • Huntington Beard Crouse Hall’s lower level improvements. This comprehensive improvement project included an expansion and renovation of the Kittredge Auditorium, construction of accessible restrooms and a lactation room on the lower level, addition of a second single-occupancy restroom at the Gifford Auditorium Lobby and a fire sprinkler installation and fire alarm upgrade. Provisions were also made to add an elevator stop at the Gifford Auditorium level next summer.

Vice President and Chief Campus Facilities Officer Pete Sala, who recently completed service as interim athletic director, has worked with great teams in the Office of Campus Planning, Design and Construction, Physical Plant and the Grounds Department, along with Housing and the Office of Residence Life, to make this all happen. Thanks to everyone who played a role in getting our campus off to a great start this year.

Sincerely,
Kent Syverud
Chancellor Kent Syverud

From the Chancellor: Project Advance

Dear Orange Friends:

On Ostrom Avenue, tucked into the upper floor of a building across the street from Thornden Park, is a Syracuse University program that teaches 10,000 students a year and that few know about. It is called Project Advance, which offers University classes to seniors at more than 200 high schools around the country and world. I visited the Project Advance offices during the doldrums of the summer and things there were really hopping as the dedicated staff geared up for record enrollments and new curricula for the coming academic year.

For more than 40 years, Project Advance has been an innovator in delivering high quality courses to talented high school students around the nation. Each year, more than 800 high school teachers, trained by Syracuse University faculty, teach courses to qualified high-school seniors who receive University credit for their work. The courses, which are rigorous and intellectually challenging, help prepare students for the transition from high school to college. Project Advance also contributes to the professional development of teachers and strengthens the quality of teaching in all of these schools.

So when people now ask me how many students Syracuse University has, I will remember that we have many kinds of students—including 10,000 Project Advance students—and that they all matter to our school.

Sincerely,

Kent Syverud
Chancellor Kent Syverud