President Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J.

President Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J.

Spend time in Bellarmine Hall, and you will come to know the faces — and a glimmer of the character — of the presidents who have led the institution for the last 75 years.

Their portraits line the hallway. From the founding president, John J. McEleney, S.J. (1942-1944), in his amaranth biretta, and across to James E. FitzGerald, S.J. (1958 -1964), with his amused smile, to William C. McInnes, S.J. (1964-1973), who led the institution through the upheavals of the counter-culture, to the end of the corridor where Aloysius P. Kelly, S.J. (1974-2004), glances at the viewer with genial recognition, reclining in academic robes.

Sometime in the next year or so, the portrait of Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J. (2004-2016), will join those along the corridor. At the end of 2016, he will be leaving Fairfield to take up a position as the Jesuit superior of John Lafarge House in Cambridge, Mass.

The portraits are a reminder that the University is not the domain or project of any one person, but is always in motion, changing with age. And yet each of these presidents shaped an era, and advanced Fairfield for a time before handing the job over to someone else. Each has taken a distinctive lead.

It is still too early to say what will have defined the “von Arx” era — a notion that Fr. von Arx laughed at self-deprecatingly when the idea was put before him in a recent interview. But 12 years is a long time, and Fairfield has changed and grown and matured over those years in every dimension of its operations.

Mark C. Reed ’96, EdD, now the president of St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, but until 2015 was the senior vice president and chief of staff at Fairfield, can quickly tick off the milestones of President von Arx’s period of leadership — the early plan to return to the spirit of Jesuit education, the emphasis on increasing diversity, maintaining the University’s academic standing and reputation, the financial crises in 2008 that rocked all of higher education and called for rapid response, and even ironically, the many building projects that were initiated during Fr. von Arx’s tenure — “Ironic, because when he first came he said to me, I’m not going to be the building president,” Dr. Reed laughed. “But when you look back at his presidency the transformation of the campus will have been enormous — the housing projects, the nursing school, all those old sidewalks that used to lead nowhere and are now integrated, and the major projects on the horizon. The University has taken a major step forward.

“I was really proud to work for the guy,” Dr. Reed continued. “And I think Fairfield did very well as a result of his leadership.”

I remember when I came here for my inauguration, it took me about a day and a half to write my inaugural address because I had been thinking about these issues for some time,” von Arx began.

That address of October 7, 2004 — described by Rev. Michael Doody S.J., a friend and the director of Restorative Ministry at Fairfield, as “a brilliant document, filled with his ideas, his religious life, his dream and vision to put Jesuit values back into education” — set forth an ambitious vision for what Fairfield would be about, with the key word being “integrity.” The address called for a revamp of the core curriculum that would liberate the intellects of students from “mindless conformity,” through a multi-disciplinary foundation; the integration of living and learning — basically, helping students to experience themselves as whole persons, more grounded, more compassionate and more open to others; and the final goal was to instill the Jesuit values of service to others in professional education. “Professional education must always keep the dimensions of service and justice, especially justice for those who are so underserved in our society, before its eyes,” he said.

Those goals informed the strategic plan that was put into place and remain the foundation of what has followed.

“There was a lot of enthusiasm and a lot of buy in,” Fr. von Arx said of that first call for renewal, “because it reflected a commitment that was broadly shared across the University.”

Fr. von Arx said he felt that Jesuit education had lost its way, based on his previous experience at Georgetown University as professor and chair in the Department of History and at Fordham University, where he was dean of Fordham College at Rose Hill.

“Yes, Jesuit education had lost its way I thought, a little bit. The core curriculum had become something of a grab bag, among the various disciplines. There wasn’t any effort to relate the disciplines to each other. We had abandoned the work of building that foundation through interdisciplinary conversation, and the challenge was how to put that back together,” he said.

And there didn’t seem to be enough emphasis on forming students in core values: “One of my other great concerns was that students had no sense of what discernment was all about. Discernment comes about because you have a sense of who you are, of what you really value, of what you believe to be true and you act accordingly. That’s what gives you the ability to make good choices in your life,” he continued.

So, those three pillars were the foundation of the first phase of Fr. von Arx’s presidency.

Asked to assess the success of that early plan, Fr. von Arx said, “I think we made some significant progress.” Certainly ethics and service are stressed in all of the professional schools. The core curriculum continues to be refined but has become “more integrated and rational,” while the emphasis on the integration of living and learning has almost become Fairfield’s defining characteristic.

“The other thing I was concerned about was a lack of diversity on campus,” he continued. “Fairfield was almost notorious for being less reflective of the diversity of our community than the high schools that many of our students were coming from. We needed to increase that significantly.” At the time Fr. von Arx arrived about seven percent of undergraduates came from diverse cultural backgrounds. That number — while it has fluctuated in large part in response to economic factors — at one point increased to about 20 percent.

And to make that work, “we had to create a welcoming environment. We had to attract and retain minority students and improve our retention rate and we have done that, thanks to the programs we put in place.”

The watershed moment of Fr. von Arx’s presidency came with the financial crises of 2008. While the goals did not change, other priorities pushed their way to the surface — chiefly, making sure that the University was financially strong and sustainable and that students could afford to attend.

“I remember in 2004 when we started, and when we put our plan together, the issue of what it might cost never crossed our minds,” he smiled, “but it was as if we would design what we wanted to do, and then we would find the money that we needed. We didn’t worry much about the cost at that time. That was unsustainable after 2008,” he continued. “One of the interesting experiences was to make that adjustment — how much can we contain tuition increases?” he asked. “That was a revolution in the way we looked at things.”

In the years since the financial crises, tuition increases have been kept between two and two and a half percent. There were some staff layoffs in the first two years after 2008, and other cuts in spending. There were other implications, including a need to increase merit aid to students, which came at the expense of need-based student aid that could have been put toward increasing the socio-economic and cultural diversity of the student population.

But with those financial realities accommodated for, the University began moving toward a new strategic plan, Fairfield 2020: The Way Forward, adopted in 2015 and now under implementation. It called for new programs, new revenue streams, more efficiencies, better use of technology and so on. There were also dramatic changes at the leadership level, particularly with Kevin P. Lawlor ’79, P’19, P’17 joining the University as executive vice president, and other changes in the advancement, academic, marketing and communications, human resources and finance divisions, all of which have led to new academic programs, improved revenue and increased endowment while containing costs.

“One of the things that I am proud of is that we made the adjustment, and now the University is in a very strong position in terms of enrollment and finance and looking for new opportunities for revenue growth. I think that the University is in a stronger position than it has ever been, and we have been able to achieve important ambitions and raise our profile.”

“I can’t be anything but happy and pleased at Fairfield’s growth in the last couple of years,” Fr. von Arx said. “I can’t take all of the credit,” he smiled, “but I can take some. I think we have broken through — there are a lot of colleges and universities that have struggled —but for us it is not just about survival. We are going to be one of the winners.”

Dr. Reed observed of the adjustments that came following 2008: “When the financial piece hit, Jeff’s style was that he was willing to make and to allow some hard choices that other institutions might not have made as quickly as Fairfield, which allowed Fairfield to emerge sooner than other institutions.”

So what’s it like to be a University president?

At this question, Fr. von Arx sat back in his chair.

“It’s like being the mayor of a small town,” he said. “You have all these multiple constituencies.You can’t please all people all of the time.If you displease a lot of the people a lot of the time you aren’t going to survive, so you have to be open to all those constituencies and maintain a balancing act.”

The constituencies also include all the local boards and committees in greater Bridgeport that he has served on, as well as the additional responsibilities to the Society of Jesus, to the local bishop, to Rome. A few years ago, a reporter from the student newspaper The Mirror asked if he could shadow Fr. von Arx for a day — a day that started with a meeting at 8:30 a.m., meetings throughout the day, a reception in the evening and ended around 9 p.m.

“He asked me: ‘Do you do this every day?’” Fr. von Arx laughed. “Well not every day, but most days. That’s typical for a college president, you don’t get many days off.”

One of the sacrifices of the job, he said, “the thing you miss the most — and try to compensate for — is that you have less direct experience of students because that is the nature of the job. That’s why I have always made it a point to attend as many student activities as I could — plays, choral events, and poster sessions for the different schools. I’ve tried to engage with students at that level, not just because that’s my way of thinking, but also because I find it interesting and energizing. That’s why we are all here!”

“And it doesn’t always come easily for me,” he went on, “because I’m a fairly shy person. So sometimes you have to push yourself to walk up to a group of people and start a conversation, but I find that rewarding and a challenging thing to do.”

Certainly, one of the most familiar sights on Fairfield’s campus over the last 12 years has been Fr. von Arx driving around the campus in a red golf cart, in his red Fairfield jacket and ball cap, on his way to a reception, a volleyball game, a lecture or what have you.

“Jeffrey von Arx is the most accessible Jesuit president that I have ever come across,” said Fr. Doody, who came to Fairfield in 2006 after a time at St. Louis University, and who has known Fr. von Arx since the 1970s. “Any student can make an appointment and can see the President! Here’s a guy who, on a Saturday will go to men’s lacrosse, rugby, women’s volleyball — he’ll go to seven or eight events on a Saturday.”

Fr. Doody also stressed Fr. von Arx’s role and influence on the University as what he is, first and foremost — a Roman Catholic priest.

“He is the first to sign up for masses at chapel,” he said. “He is a brilliant homilist, he exposes his real person at the pulpit more than anywhere else. He is deeply spiritual, and so remarkably human, so gentle and faithful to friends. I know no man with greater integrity. If you are a student with parents and you come to mass and it is the President being the celebrant? Well, that just pulls it all together.”

Over the years, there have been unseen acts of generosity, Fr. Doody continued. “I’ll come across a kid who has hit a wall — who needs a computer — not everybody has a thousand bucks, and I’ll say ‘Jeff this kids needs a computer, is there any way to help him,’ and it is all done quietly. No questions asked.”

During Hurricane Sandy in 2012 when many seniors living at the beach in a house known as “The Lobster Trap” were displaced by the flooding, Fr. von Arx opened the president’s residence and had four seniors come and live in his house — as other displaced students were placed in alumni houses, dorms and other temporary accommodations.

“He surrendered his privacy, and he did it in such a way that didn’t interfere with their college life. I mean, it wasn’t kept as clean as he would have liked,” Fr. Doody laughed. “And he is still friends with them. He makes friends for life.”

The next mission for Fr. von Arx is as Superior of John Lafarge House in Cambridge Mass., which primarily serves the Harvard community. Many of the resident Jesuits in this setting will be international students doing doctoral work at Harvard, MIT and elsewhere.

“The assignment is to create an intellectual and apostolic presence in Cambridge and to offer Jesuit spirituality to the Harvard community,” he said. “So there are great opportunities ahead but it is something of a new thing that we are trying to realize at this time.” He will also be teaching at the School of Theology and Ministry at Boston College, and will have the opportunity to return to his area of scholarship — modern Roman Catholic Church history, particularly in Britain.

For the entire 12 years that Fr. von Arx has been president, Fairfield has remained among the top-rated regional universities in the Northeast, a ranking that was re-affirmed earlier this fall when US News and World Report ranked Fairfield second in the Northeast for regional schools, the University’s highest ranking to date.

“Reputation is an elusive concept and can be problematic,” he said. “Our alumni are looking to Fairfield to be broadly recognized, and our reputation has improved in dramatic ways, so that is a good thing.”

When asked what will stand out for him as an enduring memory, he said: “Watching the transformation in our students’ lives. They come here as adolescents and they leave here — not everybody but most people — as self-realized adults. We have transformed lives in ways that are placing people where they can have full and meaningful lives and an important impact on their community and professions. It happens with kids of all backgrounds, kids who leave as outwardly focused men and women for others. That’s the deepest sense of satisfaction for all of us involved in this endeavor.”

Academic Excellence

“Something struck me about his love of the academy,” said Mary Frances Malone, PhD, associate vice president for Academic Affairs, who was on the inauguration committee for President von Arx.

Dr. Malone easily rattled off Fr. von Arx’s many accomplishments — from published articles, to the undergraduate teaching schedule he has always kept, to the seminars he has presented and supported, to the intellectual discourse with faculty members that he carefully cultivated and advocated for.

During Fr. von Arx’s tenure as president the number of full-time faculty members has risen to 272 from about 240 ten years ago.

Lynn Babington, PhD, provost and senior vice president for Academic Affairs, said, “He’s interested and faculty appreciate that,” about Fr. von Arx’s personal outreach to new faculty, annual convocation addresses and overall faculty engagement.

“Our faculty — adjunct and full-time — are leaders in their fields and are critical to our students and to our success and Jeff supports that,” Dr. Babington said.

Fr. von Arx’s vision was key to the programmatic evolution that’s spanned the last several years. For instance, the collaboration between the College of Arts and Sciences and the Egan School of Nursing and Health Studies became what is now known as the integrated health studies program and minor, the new doctor of nursing practice programs were introduced, both of which helped the Egan School’s enrollment to more than double.

The Dolan School of Business has introduced new courses of study — one of which is the Business Analytics program — developed to meet the needs and demands of Fairfield’s current and future students.

Also under his leadership, a closer look at the core curriculum sparked the creation of the Sophomore Residential Colleges and the First Year Experience. Both are programs that link living and learning experiences and help student affairs administrators and faculty members to teach components of what it means to be Jesuit educated during the first two years of a student’s collegiate life.

Several other programs or initiatives have been introduced or bolstered during Fr. von Arx’s tenure such as the Master’s of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, the Master of Public Administration Program and Management of Technology Program, the creation of the Bellarmine Hall Galleries, the creation of four schools within the College of Arts and Sciences and support for Quick Center programming, to name just a few more.

Diversity and Global Citizenship

Embracing diversity has always been a distinctive hallmark of Jesuit education. From the very beginning of his tenure at Fairfield, an important emphasis for Fr. von Arx has been diversity and global citizenship. A number of initiatives, clubs and organizations promote diversity at Fairfield, including study abroad partnerships, international students through the Office of Student Engagement and academic offerings such as Black Studies, Asian Studies, Judaic Studies and International Studies. Common Ground is an interfaith group that is committed to building religious literacy in the campus community — to act upon common values to create positive change in the community and world.

The President’s Institutional Diversity Council (PIDC) was established in 2005 to evaluate, review and assess the institution’s progress as it strengthens its multicultural education curricula and its human diversity foundation and goals. Ongoing efforts by the Council include ensuring that core curriculum revisions include student learning outcomes and required courses that address multicultural competency development and issues of diversity and inclusion on campus.

Today 51 countries are represented in our undergraduate student body and 32 countries in our graduate student body. Over the past decade the faculty has become increasingly diverse. Among our full-time faculty, six percent are natives from countries across the globe and nearly 54 percent are women.

“When we talk about diversity at Fairfield we do so within the broader understanding of what it means to be a Catholic and Jesuit university. Our commitment to diversity, inclusiveness and a supporting campus climate has to be distinctive. It can’t simply be generic. It has to reflect who and what we are as a Jesuit and Catholic university,” said Fr. von Arx at the recent University Convocation in September. “And so our obligation as an institution is to foster a climate of deeper understanding, of deeper compassion, of deeper commitment to one another, of a willingness to listen and be open to the experience of others.”

Athletics

President von Arx became a familiar sight at Fairfield games during his 12-year tenure in office, riding his golf cart around campus to watch anything from baseball to tennis and everything in between.

“It has meant a lot to the student-athletes to see Fr. von Arx at the games,” said Fairfield University Athletic Director Gene Doris, who has spent many an afternoon and evening sitting next to the president in the stands, silently (for the most part) rooting for the Stags.

“Parents and student-athletes hear that the school is committed to athletics during the recruiting process. But, when they are at games or playing and they see Fr. von Arx, the president of the University, at games, matches or meets they know we have something very special here.”

During Fr. von Arx’s presidency, several major facility improvements took place, which have allowed the University’s coaches to appeal to a broader range of top student-athletes.

The most recent enhancement is the modern transformation of Alumni Diamond. The renovation featured a new backstop with a total seating capacity of 350, including 80 chair-back seats behind home plate and a modern backstop netting system for improved sightlines. In addition to the enhancements to Alumni Diamond, the Stags introduced a renovated state-of-the-art locker room this fall.

There’s also a new site for the school’s women’s and men’s lacrosse teams, Conway Field at Rafferty Stadium, which debuted in 2015.

Fr. von Arx was involved in several major coaching hires, inviting those finalists being considered for the positions to his home to meet in a relaxed atmosphere.

Doris said, “I’m going to miss him being President of the school, but he has left the athletic program with a firm foundation for the next person who assumes the post.”

Championships (Fall 2004 – present)

MAAC Commissioner’s Cup (5)
Overall (2): 2008-09, 2011-12
Women’s (2): 2008-09, 2014-15
Men’s (1): 2011-12

Baseball
MAAC Regular Season Champions (1): 2016
MAAC Tournament Champions (1): 2016
NCAA Tournament Appearances (1): 2016

Men’s Basketball
MAAC Regular Season Champions (1): 2011
NIT Appearances (1): 2011

Women’s Basketball
WNIT Appearances (1): 2012

Field Hockey
MAAC Tournament Champions (1): 2015
NCAA Tournament Appearances (1): 2015

Men’s Lacrosse
Great West Lacrosse League Champions (1): 2005
ECAC Lacrosse League Regular Season Champions (1): 2014
CAA Regular Season Champions (2): 2015, 2016
NCAA Tournament Appearances (1): 2005

Women’s Lacrosse
MAAC Regular Season Champions (5): 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014
MAAC Tournament Champions (2): 2009, 2015
NCAA Tournament Appearance (2): 2009, 2015

Men’s Soccer
MAAC Regular Season Champions (2): 2005, 2006
MAAC Tournament Champions (3): 2006, 2008, 2011
NCAA Tournament Appearances (3): 2006, 2008, 2011

Women’s Soccer
MAAC Regular Season Champions (1): 2012
MAAC Tournament Champions (2): 2005, 2008
NCAA Tournament Appearances (2): 2005, 2008

Softball
MAAC Regular Season Champions (5): 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015
MAAC Tournament Champions (1): 2015
NCAA Appearances (1): 2015

Men’s Tennis
MAAC Tournament Champions (1): 2012
NCAA Appearances (1): 2012

Women’s Tennis
MAAC Regular Season Champions (4): 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
MAAC Tournament Champions (3): 2009, 2010, 2012
NCAA Appearances (3): 2009, 2010, 2012

Volleyball
MAAC Regular Season Champions (9): 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2012, 2013, 2015
MAAC Tournament Champions (3):
2012, 2013, 2015
NCAA Tournament Appearances (3):
2012, 2013, 2015

Service

Encouraging students, faculty and staff to be involved in community service — either in the region, or in service work around the world has been a defining feature of Fairfield under President von Arx’s leadership.

Much of that effort has been centered at the Center for Faith and Public Life (CFPL), established in 2005. In the years since, faculty have developed more than 45 service-learning courses across the disciplines, engaging more than 800 students and more than 30 community partners each year.

During Fr. von Arx’s administration, service learning at Fairfield has “grown to what we’ve become today, in large part because of his support,” said Director of the CFPL Melissa Quan. “He listened to faculty when they asked for support to do this work and he matched that effort with his leadership to make it happen.”

Fr. von Arx was also instrumental in Fairfield’s research projects on the challenges for undocumented students in higher education. “One of the major goals was to really galvanize the strength of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) network around this research. We needed Father’s help with obtaining support from the 27 other AJCU presidents.”

From multiple service-learning courses, partnerships with Bridgeport schools, the Bridgeport Tuition Grant and a variety of domestic and international community service programs, Quan said, “All of that has expanded under his tenure. Service learning started with a handful of courses and now it’s integrated across all the schools and has been part of Fairfield 2020 in a meaningful way.”

Mission

In September, President von Arx welcomed the Class of 2020: “Fairfield is a Jesuit University, and so it is the inheritor of a 460-year-old educational tradition that has always sought to develop young men and women who are whole.”

The commitment to form persons in the Catholic and Jesuit tradition — with an emphasis on an embrace of diversity and a dedication to social justice, has been at the core of Fairfield’s development during Fr. von Arx’s tenure.

Ongoing reflection on what the mission is has been informed by programs, lectures and workshops hosted by the Center for Catholic Studies, the Center for Faith and Public Life, the Carl and Dorothy Bennett Center for Judaic Studies and the Egan Chapel of St. Ignatius Loyola, home to Campus Ministry and chaplains from other faith traditions offering services, retreats and service projects.

In 2005, Paul Lakeland, PhD, professor of religious studies, was formally installed as the first holder of the Aloysius P. Kelley, S.J., chair in Catholic Studies in the Center for Catholic Studies, which ensures that Catholic thought and tradition is part of the intellectual dialogue across the University.

“He’s been very concerned and doesn’t want to lose the Catholic story, both in terms of his efforts in the Catholic tradition under Paul’s leadership, and in terms of the mission of the school as a whole,” said Nancy Dallavalle, PhD, vice president for Mission and Identity and associate professor of Religious Studies. “Fr. von Arx is continuing to think critically about church history in a way that has significant implications on how we understand ourselves as a church going forward.” She continued, “How we are organizing ourselves to bring forward laypeople who have something to offer in a way that continues and reflects and animates the mission and identity of Jesuit schools — he is perceptive in his concern about the Catholic tradition and promoting laypeople as articulators of the Jesuit experience.”

The Center for Ignatian Spirituality was established in 2014 under the leadership of Fr. von Arx and Rev. James Bowler, S.J. The mission of the Center is to train spiritual directors in the Jesuit tradition, to serve the campus community and the Diocese of Bridgeport. The Center recognizes that the future of the Ignatian charism will rely increasingly on lay companions. “Jim had vision and Jeff saw the value and urgency of what this Center was becoming — and the richness and transformative power of big spirituality, not in theory but in practice,” said Rev. Gerry Blaszczak, S.J., the current director.

A $4 million gift in honor of Fr. von Arx was recently made to the Center by longtime University supporter and 2011 honorary degree recipient, the Honorable Maryanne Trump Barry, senior judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.

Student Life

You could argue President von Arx left his greatest mark on Fairfield’s Division of Student Affairs.

From innovative and active residential colleges where sophomores live in a guided residential experience to expanded psychological and career planning services to the wildly popular President’s Ball, his commitment to the life of Fairfield’s students has been evident.

New residence halls built during his tenure not only meet state-of-the-art standards for college living spaces, but are designed to foster an intentional, reflective life.

Faber Hall, home to the Creative Life residential college — significantly renovated in 2009 — features open spaces conducive to both formal lectures, performances and fitness classes and informal discussion. Located in the Quad, 70 McCormick Road opened in the fall of 2011, and is home to the Service for Justice Sophomore Residential College.

Tom Pellegrino, PhD, senior vice president for Student Affairs, said the thoughtful attention to the physical spaces students inhabit is an example of Fr. von Arx’ dedication a 24/7 approach to education.

“Physical space matters,” he said. “Those could be incubators. He really honed in on that. And we’re now known for our residential college program.”

Fr. von Arx also jumpstarted the Career Planning arena, encouraging the application of academics to internships, service learning and jobs, always with an emphasis on keeping Jesuit ideals front and center, Pellegrino said.

“He’s had an amazing effect on Career Planning,” he said. “Jeff is pragmatic and he knew that area needed to advance and evolve.”

Under Fr. von Arx, the University expanded its psychological services for students in need of a little stress reduction or those experiencing ongoing physical and mental challenges. The president shined a light on campus diversity, expanding services and strategic goals in support of racial and socio-economic diversity and the LGBTQ community.

He endorsed the Safe Space program and continues to promote outreach to Bridgeport high school students who might have thought a Fairfield education was out of their reach.

Advancement

The Fairfield Rising capital campaign —still ongoing and now on track to meet or exceed it’s $160 million goal, was in the works as early as 2008, and as President von Arx prepares to leave Fairfield, he will do so having overseen the University’s most successful fundraising effort. Fr. von Arx’s vision to grow the University’s endowment gave focus to three major fundraising areas of the campaign: student scholarships for those who need it, to attract and retain top faculty while developing academic programs, and facilities.

Overall, Fairfield’s endowment has grown from $133 million in 2004 to about $318.5 million today, and that despite the major setback of the financial crises of 2008.

“Fairfield Rising was really his campaign,” said Wally Halas, vice president for University Advancement, “and we’ve made some major strides.”

While Fr. von Arx may not have in- tended to be “the building president” as former chief of staff Dr. Mark C. Reed put it, more new facilities and major renovations will have been initiated under his tenure than that of any other president.

That includes two new residence halls, and a major renovation of two others which are currently in use, the creation of the Bellarmine Hall Galleries, Rafferty Stadium, a significant expansion of the Leslie C. Quick Recreation Center and a renovation to Alumni Diamond, which will see action in 2017.

As he departs, a University Master Plan has been put into motion, which will see a number of new buildings on campus.

One of the most important strides was the transformational $10 million gift from Bill ’67 and Jackie Egan, P’99 to name the School of Nursing — which has led to the current construction of a new home for Marion Peckham Egan School of Nursing and Health Studies. It is slated for completion in the fall of 2017.

Other new buildings include a two-story parking garage on the footprint of the existing parking lot of the Kelley Center slated for completion in the fall of 2017; a new residence hall in the Quad area that will accommodate 220 freshman and sophomores, slated for completion in August of 2018; and the expansion of the Barone Campus Center slated for completion in 2018. Plans are in the works for an upgrade to the Dolan School of Business and for a convocation facility on the footprint of Alumni Hall.