With the approach of Thanksgiving, I find myself reflecting on the many blessings that Gannon University has experienced these past few months. Three words come to mind as I ponder that spirit of gratitude: dedication, inspiration and transformation.
I am moved by how I’ve seen our Gannon community put these three words into action and the effects they’ve yielded across our campuses and the communities we serve.
The landscape of higher education has changed, and we are changing with it. We celebrated the expansion of our Ruskin campus with the opening and dedication of a new academic building in August that will accommodate the campus’ rapidly growing student enrollment. This growing enrollment played a part in the university achieving its highest fall enrollment — 4,444 — since 1991, a significant milestone that inspires pride in us all and signals the next achievements on the horizon of a dedicated faculty and staff.
In addition to the changing landscape in Ruskin, our Erie campus is undergoing transformation as well. Plans are being carried out for major renovations to the Mary, Seat of Wisdom Chapel, including capping a gas well we discovered below the building. The adjacent Pontifical Center and Student Services Building were demolished to make way for that work, and this area will become new green space for our campus and urban neighbors. Continuing the theme of physical campus transformation, interior demolition at Knight Tower has begun. That building will be home to the Institute for Health and Cyber Knowledge, including the Pierre McCormick Cyber Learning Center. Several of us joined together on an October day to take the first hammer swings toward transformation.
These important events continue to create environments where transformation of our students and our colleagues can occur as we share life-changing educational opportunities. We are grateful for the dedication of our faculty and staff, alumni, community partners, and all who are inspired by our Mission and are jumping into opportunities for transformation.
I am humbled to witness the evolution of our enthusiastic students into passionate and professional alumni on and outside our changing campus landscapes. What a privilege it is to share such stories with you in this edition of the Gannon Magazine. These stories represent just some of the many inspiring journeys of the many members in our Gannon community.
Ever grateful for God’s and your blessings and support,
Keith Taylor, Ph.D.
President, Gannon University