The relationship between IUP and its alumni is multifaceted. You are a reflection of our work as much as our work today reflects on you. The moment you enrolled as a student, you joined a community that comes with a lifelong association.
In fact, IUP’s relationship with its alumni is woven into the fabric of our vision statement. Many of you have told us that your experience was the best possible preparation and that you find joy in the bonds you created with faculty and staff members,
fellow students, and other alumni.
We owe it to you to do right by our students as much as we owe it to them. After all, the better we do today, the more value your degree has—whether you earned it last year or two decades ago.
We know that many of our students—like many of you—are the first in their families to attend college. It’s not always an easy transition, regardless of how bright they are. Our freshman class this year is solid, with 19 valedictorians and salutatorians
and an average high school grade point average of 3.24. Still, the college experience can be daunting.
For that reason, we are concentrating on a few initiatives to improve student success. One is establishing a task force to identify the very best practices in retention and persistence and to lead their implementation. I have challenged every member of
our university community—from president to professor, from coach to custodian—to take a role in getting students to IUP, ensuring they have a good experience, and celebrating them as they join you in the alumni ranks.
Here’s something else we know: Students who engage in hands-on research, whether at the undergraduate or graduate level, have a better success rate. And, when they learn from people who are pushing the boundaries of knowledge, as our professors are, students
benefit from that direct connection. This edition of IUP Magazine—and, really, every edition—showcases some of that work, which illustrates our doctoral/research mission.
We are working hard to make your alma mater a university that shapes our next generation of leaders. We are working hard to make you proud.
Michael A. Driscoll