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Director of Student and Family Relations
4200 54th Avenue South
St. Petersburg, FL 33711
toll-free: (800) 456-9009
local: (727) 865-7163
Letter from the President
February 14, 2014
Dear Eckerd College Family,
The campus is bustling again as we finish the third week of the Spring Semester. Students who spent winter term studying in exotic locales around the globe and those who pursued one of the many innovative winter term courses on campus are enthusiastically sharing their experiences as together they acclimate to the more conventional rhythm and schedule of the new semester.
A liberal arts education at Eckerd College challenges students to think critically and creatively as they develop the capacity to be imaginative and effective problem-solvers in an ever-changing global context. As we remain steadfast in our commitment to provide for students the most intellectually and personally enriching educational experience during their time with us, we simultaneously seek new ways to strengthen our academic and student life programs and expand innovative initiatives through careful resource management and through the vision and generosity of our supporters. As an important part of maintaining our commitment to excellence, comprehensive fees, including tuition, room, board and activity fee will increase next year by $1,712, which is a 3.6% increase. As always, we stand ready to work closely with our students and their families to assist with individual financial challenges.
In addition to offering students a myriad of campus resources, we also strive to provide them with access to the expertise and opinions of today’s thought leaders. Campus events and lectures this spring and next fall will feature prominent cultural, scientific, political, and religious figures who will address issues and topics of global and national importance.
- This month, Eckerd will host Benjamin Jealous, former President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). A Rhodes Scholar, Mr. Jealous is a graduate of Columbia and Oxford Universities. During his remarks he will identify the simple steps that can help to propel an individual toward achieving feats of great social transformation and service.
- Also in February, the College will host Everglades Superintendent Dan Kimball who will discuss the strategies necessary to complete the largest ecosystem restoration project in the history of the United States.
- The General Education Committee selected Enrique's Journey: The Story of a Boy's Dangerous Odyssey to Reunite with his Mother, by the Pulitzer Prize winning author Sonia Nazario, as the College’s Summer 2014 reading. In September, both Ms. Nazario and Enrique’s mother, Lourdes Flores, will visit campus to discuss the book’s exploration of the human tragedies surrounding immigration as well as the complexity of the issues that surround it.
The primary way in which our commitment to our students is demonstrated is through providing the highest quality undergraduate instruction delivered by talented faculty members who have earned international reputations in their fields and understand and embrace the value of teaching undergraduate students in a liberal arts setting. This year we have hired full-time tenure track faculty in Environmental Studies and Chemistry, and we anticipate successfully completing the searches for new faculty members in Religious Studies and Communication later this spring.
We continually seek new ways to enhance our campus facilities and staff resources to support student learning within and beyond the classroom.
- Renovations to the Sheen Complex classrooms, offices, and computer labs and construction of new teaching and lab spaces for the College’s Environmental Studies, Physics, Math, and Computer Science programs are nearly complete.
- As a part of our continuing plan to refurbish the common spaces of the seven legacy houses, the Beta Complex lounge was renovated this past summer to create gathering space, which facilitates student learning and invites their engagement with one another.
- The College’s commitment to supporting student academic success is reflected in our appointment of a full-time Academic Coach as well as a part-time coach in our new Center for Innovative Learning. The appointment of a second full-time Outreach Specialist in the Office of the Dean of Students also reflects our commitment to address the growing need for student support outside the classroom.
I know that you work hard to support your student in his or her educational journey, and I pledge that we will continue to keep faith with the sacrifice that you are making to send your student to Eckerd College through our careful stewardship of the College’s resources.
All best wishes,
Donald R. Eastman III