Nature, this past fall, provided us with memorable experiences—record rainfall, an earthquake and snow on Halloween. During the unusual snow storm, one of the College’s multi-talented faculty members, Professor of Chemistry Emeritus Charlie Schaeffer, beautifully captured the combination of brightly colored autumn leaves, amidst snow, near Leffler Chapel and Performance Center. While the College and the community dealt with unexpected events, by making emergency changes and rearranging schedules, it was gratifying to see beauty in the experience, such as sunshine falling on the leaves and snow in Professor Schaeffer’s photo. I am equally gratified by the professionalism of our staff and faculty who get the job done because they deeply care about our mission of education and service.
During the freak storm, when several residences were without power, students in other buildings took in their classmates. I often see that same spirit of community at Elizabethtown College. During my “Tuesdays with Carl” lunches, in meetings with Student Senate and Etownian staff members and in talks while walking across campus, I am impressed with how our students make the most of their opportunities to learn and support each other.
As example, last November, students and faculty members in the Department of Fine and Performing Arts organized an exciting “Paris Exposé” covering art, music, poetry and dance from the era of the great world’s fairs between 1855 and 1937, an event that drew 250 students and community members; both our women’s and men’s cross-country teams won their league championships this fall—running tough in the midst of that Halloween weekend snow; and more than 70 people—faculty and staff members, administrators, students, alumni and community members—have been hard at work on strategic planning. Hundreds have contributed thoughtful suggestions.
The snows of winter—or fall—look bright and beautiful in the sunshine. So does Elizabethtown College as it looks to the future.