Baylor Students, Faculty and Staff:
I am looking forward to opening up our campus for Family Weekend this Friday and Saturday. This is such a special time now that the fall semester is in full swing and we have an opportunity to showcase several student performances, athletic competitions and the Waco community. Our new Chief Business Officer, Brett Dalton, and I will also host a session on Illuminate and Baylor’s goal to become a preeminent Christian research university. A full schedule is available online, and it’s never too late to invite family members to come to campus and see you!
Here are several other campus happenings that may be of interest:
- I enjoyed celebrating more than 80 faculty members today at the inaugural Newsmakers Luncheon hosted by Baylor Media Communications that honored faculty for taking the time to share their research and expertise with the news media. Congratulations to Michael K. Scullin, Ph.D., director of the Sleep Neuroscience and Cognition Laboratory and assistant professor of psychology and neuroscience, who received the inaugural Newsmaker of the Year award for his sleep research, which was reported by hundreds of media outlets from Good Morning America to USA TODAY. Our media team also recognized James A. Roberts, Ph.D., The Ben H. Williams Professor of Marketing, for his long legacy of working with the news media. I understand firsthand that time is a precious commodity for faculty, but I also know that as we build the visibility and profile of Baylor under Illuminate, our University will have a more significant and distinct voice in the world on issues that matter.
- Speaking of making news, tomorrow I will be in Austin for the Texas Tribune Festival, where I will participate on a panel discussing “Gender, Power and Leadership.” Joining me on the panel will be distinguished state governmental leaders Wendy Davis, Eva Guzman and Senfronia Thompson. You may also want to watch the Texas Tribune this fall as we spotlight Baylor as the state’s next great research university.
- Unfortunately during this trip to Austin, I am unable to meet “Baylor,” the University of Texas Police Department’s new K-9. BaylorProud has a fun story and video of how Baylor came to patrol the 40 Acres, thanks to a gift from one of our MBA graduates. I just hope that the Livingstone Family pup, BU, doesn’t mind sharing the attention!
- This Monday we will launch an all-new version of Baylor’s home page. This dynamic, new layout is focused on undergraduate and graduate student recruitment and features a visually rich design that illustrates “where lights shine bright” on Baylor’s vibrant and active campus. You will also see new tools to find resources on Baylor’s websites along with a link to the “Students” and “Faculty and Staff” home pages. Before the public launch, we have a special sneak preview for you at www.baylor.edu/home.
- Ken Burns, who has produced some of the most acclaimed historical documentaries ever made, will be at Waco Hall on Monday at 3:30 p.m. as part of the Beall Russell Lectures in the Humanities. After being introduced by the First Gent – who I can attest is an avid history aficionado and a big fan – Burns will give a presentation on “Sharing the American Experience” and then allow time for a Q-and-A session. The last I heard, less than 300 tickets remain for this blockbuster lecture.
- Last week Baylor and the Baptist General Convention of Texas signed a cooperative agreement for a renewed vision of Baptist Student Ministries as a chartered student organization on campus. As Burt L. Burleson, D.Min., University chaplain and dean of spiritual life and missions, said as part of the ceremony, “Denominational heritage, connections and involvement are one of the keys to a vibrant Christian university.”
Thank you for being a part of the Baylor Family. Our University is significantly blessed, and we have a bright future ahead.
Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.