Presidential Perspective - September 23, 2021
Baylor Students, Faculty, Staff and Parents:
Tomorrow will be an exciting time as we highlight Baylor research in a day-early celebration of National Research Administrator Day. Throughout Friday, you will see stories on social media highlighting our outstanding faculty, and I hope you will consider sharing some of them to amplify the news of Baylor’s incredible research. Additionally, Bears in Dallas, Houston and Waco should be on the lookout for dozens of digital billboards featuring Baylor researchers, and Texas Tribune readers will see Baylor faculty in ads online. As we spotlight the work of our faculty, we also share a heartfelt thanks to staff in the Office of the Vice Provost for Research who support these researchers behind the scenes. Their distinctive service plays an important role in elevating our research to new heights as we continue on the pathway to being recognized as an “R1” institution and the preeminent Christian research university. You can meet this year’s featured professors in a recent Baylor Proud post and learn more about research across the University on our research website.
Some updates for this week:
- Baylor students’ engagement with their studies, interaction with their faculty and satisfaction with their experience landed the University in a tie nationally at No. 4 – and tops in Texas and the Big 12 – for Student Engagement in the 2022 Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education College Rankings released this week. The ranking includes the results of the “THE US Student Survey,” through which students answered 12 core questions about their college experience to measure how well a university informs, inspires and challenges its students. Along with Baylor’s recent U.S. News ranking at No. 15 for First-Year Experiences, this additional national recognition demonstrates that what makes a Baylor education special is the entire Baylor experience, both inside and outside the classroom.
- We are entering one of my favorite weekends of the year – Family Weekend. I love seeing our students show their families around campus and hearing them talk about all they have already done during the semester. Here are some highlights of the full schedule of events: Tomorrow afternoon we will host a coffee reception for our families and faculty, then families will have dinner on campus before enjoying our student showcase, After Dark. Demand was so great for After Dark that we had to add a second dinner and show to the calendar. On Saturday, families will be on hand to cheer the Bears to victory over the Iowa State Cyclones before having some free time with their students. Please join me in welcoming our families to campus!
- Being a good neighbor is not only a part of our Christian identity, but an embodiment of the Baylor spirit. With fall in the air and the semester settling into a consistent pace, I encourage you to consider what it means for you to be a good neighbor on your street, in your apartment complex or in your residence hall. Whether picking up trash, helping a friend move furniture or enjoying a cookout, let us all remember our calling to be good neighbors. Speaking of neighborhoods, the Office of External Affairs in partnership with our Student Body External Vice President are bringing back the Baylor Neighborhood Association with its first meeting next Monday. To learn more about joining and participating in the neighborhood that surrounds and includes our campus, visit www.baylor.edu/waco/bna.
- This week we launched the Dr Pepper Hour Tour in which we are sharing one of Baylor’s favorite traditions with select high schools across the state. As part of the 17-school, five-city fall tour, a bright gold Baylor-branded Dr Pepper Hour truck-and-trailer combo will greet prospective students at their respective high schools when classes dismiss for the day. They will receive a Dr Pepper Float kit and have an opportunity to visit with Baylor Undergraduate Admissions Counselors. You can follow the tour’s progress online, but we have a special treat on Saturday as we’ll have the Dr Pepper Hour Tour set up next to the Baylor Alumni Tailgate from 12:30-1:30 p.m. prior to the Iowa State football game.
Speaking of Saturday … Be sure to wear GOLD, and Sic ’em, Bears!
Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.