The end of each year is a time of reflection as we look back at what we have accomplished—and look forward to what we still must and can do. It is the time to rejoice in the company of family and good friends—and also to hold dear the memories of those who are no longer with us. The holidays are a reminder to all of us to give thanks for all that we are given—and the opportunity to do what we can to ensure that no one goes without.
Here at Carlow, this has been a year with much to celebrate—from the Middle States re-accreditation to our head softball coach Bob Sirko being named United States Collegiate Athletic Conference Coach of the Year, from the recognition of the research done by our faculty to the career outcomes of our graduates. And at Homecoming, we remembered and applauded the members of the Class of 1966, whose work during the civil rights movement deserves our sincere thanks—as does their generous Legacy Endowment to Carlow’s Social Justice Institutes.
There are so many reasons to be #CarlowProud, and this issue of Carlow University Magazine, focused on community, highlights just a few examples of the impact we can have when we work together to build a just and merciful world. From Chanessa Schuler ’12 who works to develop mentoring relationships for African American male teens to the special bond enjoyed by our university’s athletic teams, from Carlow’s place in the Oakland neighborhood to the work being done by Nikia Tucker ’15, one of our nursing graduates who volunteers with Operation Safety Net, it is exciting to see what is possible when we stand together, value our shared humanity, and embrace our diversity. It is from each other, and from our Catholic heritage and Mercy values, that we get strength and resolve. And, in the new year, it is the respect we have for each other that will make it possible for us to prosper.
By the way, the picture on the front of this issue is a detail from one of the incredible stained glass windows in McAuley Chapel in the University Commons. I hope you will agree that it embodies the joy and light of the holiday season—and reflects a university community that has faith in the future.
I wish you and your family and friends Merry Christmas—and may the holidays and the new year be peaceful and joyous.
Suzanne K. Mellon, PhD