As you read this, I will be nearing the end of my fourth month as Seton Hall’s president. Every day I am learning more about our outstanding Catholic university, the remarkable dedication of its people, and the myriad strengths that have made it a leader in higher education for 163 years.
I am filled with excitement and gratitude at the opportunity to serve as your president. My decision to come to Seton Hall was guided by the belief that this institution is ideally suited to creating new standards for what a Catholic university can and should be. Rooted in faith and guided by an unwavering commitment to academic inquiry and civil discourse, we will foster the next generation of great minds by engaging with the great conversations, challenges and debates of our time.
Since my arrival, I have had the pleasure of communicating with alumni and friends from around the corner and around the world. In conversations on the Green during Seton Hall Weekend and through letters and emails, you expressed your love for the University and your gratitude for its power to change destinations and transform lives.
You told me about professors who broadened your perspectives, internships that led to fulfilling careers and events that deepened your faith. You told me you miss the beauty of walking across campus and being part of a close-knit community. All of this reaffirmed my belief that coming to Seton Hall was certainly the right choice for me and my family.
Growing up in a working-class Catholic community, I learned that no one accomplishes anything worthwhile without the assistance of others. Throughout my years at a Catholic high school, I was inspired and supported by dedicated individuals who were invested in my success. And I was fortunate to attend universities where a caring community was woven into the fabric of the institution. I recognized these characteristics immediately when I arrived at Seton Hall.
Rooted in faith and guided by an
unwavering commitment to academic inquiry
and civil discourse, we will foster the next
generation of great minds by engaging
with the great conversations, challenges
and debates of our time.
With that in mind, our goal is to elevate Seton Hall as one University — a global community where all members are fully invested in each other’s success. From the groundskeeper who attends to the beauty of the Green to the faculty member who attends to the beauty of the mind, each of us plays a vital role in helping students thrive and graduate.
Our identity as one University extends from South Orange to California to Kuala Lumpur and beyond — wherever Setonians live, work and serve. Yet we also are one University across generations, standing on the shoulders of our Setonian forebears who nurtured Seton Hall into the singular institution it is today. To recognize and advance their achievements, we must remain loyal to three principles: Honor our past, with its legacy and traditions. Engage fully with our present opportunities and challenges. And build our future with vision and optimism.
Already we have begun a strategic planning process that will guide our decision-making for the next five years. Key to its success is engaging a wide swath of the University community. For the remainder of this academic year, the voices of Seton Hall will help establish priorities and develop strategies that will further energize the great minds that have always been part of our essence.
As our strategic plan takes shape and ultimately takes flight, I have faith that our community of more than 100,000 alumni and friends will help us rise to new heights. I know Seton Hall graduates do much more than show up; they roll up their sleeves and participate in extraordinary ways to ensure their alma mater’s success. Thanks to your uncommon dedication, we are poised to make even greater strides among the country’s leading institutions of higher learning.
As I have said many times since August, thank you for your well-wishes and words of support and encouragement. This is an exciting time for Seton Hall, and I am ready to work with everyone in the University community to guide us through the next great chapter in our long and storied history. It is an honor to be a part of this important work, and a privilege to call myself a Setonian.