It’s great to launch my second year as president of Midwestern State University! Our campus is reflecting the energy and direction of its talented faculty, staff and administration as we add buildings, fields and programs. The 500-bed Legacy Hall has opened its doors to an enthused freshman class and the extension to Mass Communications is going up at Fain Fine Arts. Contracts have been signed for a new home for the Gunn College of Health Sciences and Human Services, now under design. Residents and commuters are enjoying fresh new food service options in the Student Center to fuel their engagement in challenging academic courses and programs. Additionally, there will be many opportunities for relaxation and revitalization with our new artificial turf intramural and athletic fields.
Mustangs engaged in NCAA Division II athletics are looking forward to another competitive season, having welcomed three new teams to our vibrant Lone Star Conference: Western New Mexico University, The University of Texas of the Permian Basin, and for football only Oklahoma Panhandle State University.
Several governance groups will be working on areas of opportunity this year. Representatives from the students, faculty and staff will help shape our budget priorities in the Budget Oversight Committee. Strategic planning and the design of MSU’s first comprehensive fundraising campaign will be significant initiatives. Accomplishing our strategic goals with the assistance of robust donor support will certainly be critical for preserving our rich history and insuring an exciting future.
Students choose Midwestern State because they know they can learn here in a personal and meaningful way. The faculty will encourage you not only to listen and observe, but, more importantly, to engage. It is that engagement in your classes, in organizations, and in campus life that will make these MSU years memorable and valuable. Certainly this individualized approach that faculty offers students is hard to come by at large and impersonal universities.
We are a COPLAC institution, that’s the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges, an elite national group that Midwestern belongs to as the only member from Texas. Like our fellow COPLAC universities, we create opportunities for you to make lasting connections to your professors and to your fellow students. Those connections, whether with a mentor faculty member or a student working with you in class, will define your university experience. It is that intense student experience that we aim to create that will result in an outstanding learning environment for each of you.
I encourage you to take advantage of this personal approach to learning, and I look forward to getting to meet you on campus. When we do meet, let’s try to talk about your views concerning Midwestern State University. What are your ideas for this university as together we move forward? Together, we can embrace the changes of the new school year and build Midwestern State’s future.
Have a great semester, and GO MUSTANGS!
Dr. Suzanne Shipley