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Around Campus

What’s in store for the 2013-14 academic year at Transylvania?

New initiatives and programs bring exciting changes to campus

President R. Owen Williams and the Board of Trustees are busy preparing for an active 2013-14 academic year, moving forward on exciting new initiatives and programs.

“Our goal for Transylvania this academic year is simple: implement programs that will make this outstanding institution even better,” Williams said. “There are many great things in the works to be excited about for our students, faculty, staff, and alumni.”

These include:
•  Implementing the strategic plan—Transylvania 2020—which encompasses enrollment growth, expansion of campus facilities, and enhancements to academic and student life programs.
•  Continuing to implement the Strategic Enrollment Plan, which in the past three years has increased the number of students who identify themselves as a member of a racial or ethnic minority group by 150 percent, out-of-state students by 79 percent, and international students by 400 percent. This fall’s entering class is the most racially and ethnically diverse incoming class in Transylvania history, with 60 students (20 percent
of the class) identifying themselves as a member of a racial or ethnic minority group.
•  Finalizing plans for bringing the Henry Clay Center for Statesmanship to campus and hiring a director. Beginning in 2014, outstanding high school students from around the state will come to Transylvania for a one-week immersion into Clay’s principles of debate, diplomacy, communication, and beneficial compromise.
•  The official opening in the fall of our state-of-the-art athletics complex on a 10-acre plot on West Fourth Street. The new facility will be home to the soccer, lacrosse, track and field, and field hockey teams. It will feature a lighted turf field surrounded by an NCAA-regulation eight-lane track with an all-weather surface. Space for field events will be adjacent. The athletics complex also will include an 800-seat grandstand, press box, concession area, and parking lot. Additionally, a new field house will include locker rooms, a training room, and coaches’ offices.
•  Planning for expansion of our cooperation with other higher education institutions to offer online courses for students.

“We are enthusiastic about the upcoming academic year,” said Chairman of the Board of Trustees William T. Young Jr. “We are moving forward under Williams’s leadership with Transylvania 2020 and prioritizing our most critical needs. The plan, based on input we received from the whole Transylvania community, provides a roadmap for the university going forward.”

Holly K. Sheilley, who became athletics director on July 1, will work with Williams and the trustees to develop a new athletics plan to go along with the new state-of-the-art facilities.

“The opening of the athletics facilities and the recent addition of men’s and women’s lacrosse, equestrian, and competitive dance/cheer teams marks the start of a new and wonderful era for Transylvania’s student-athletes,” said Sheilley. “I look forward to working with President Williams and the trustees to ensure that the athletics department is well integrated into the university’s strategic plan.”

Art history professor Nancy Wolsk said, “I applaud the work undertaken by President Williams and the trustees to strengthen the university.” This includes improving the Campus Plan, creating the strategic plan, and implementing diversity initiatives. “I look forward to the upcoming year as we expand and build on these and other initiatives,” she said.

Williams said the university could not have undertaken these initiatives without tremendous support from alumni. “I invite alumni to visit campus and see first-hand the great changes taking place.”

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