As reflected in this issue of The Word, which serves as our Annual Report, you’ll see that the 2001-2002 school year was among the most memorable and busiest in our long history.
This past summer alone saw the completion of two new important campus structures - the Gorman Business and Education Center, which is the new home of the Dreeben School of Education, and the five-story facility by the International Conference Center.
The Gorman Center, which is incorporated into Incarnate Word House - one of the most historic structures on the campus - features an auditorium and dozens of new classrooms and offices. It was named in honor of Jim and Tena Gorman, long-time friends and benefactors of Incarnate Word.
The multi-functional facility atop the hill by the ICC includes three levels of parking, apartments, a Starbucks Coffee Bar and a bookstore three times the size of the old one. The centerpiece of the facility is the Sky Room, an 800-seat hall on the top floor featuring stunning views of the downtown San Antonio skyline. Its grand opening was Oct. 24 when San Antonio native Frank Bennack Jr., who was CEO and president of the Hearst Corp. until earlier this year, was honored as the recipient of an honorary doctorate from us at a black tie gala event sponsored by the World Affairs Council of San Antonio.
The cafeteria in Marian Hall also underwent major renovations during the summer. Its airy and spacious new look gives it the ambiance of a European bistro.
During the summer we also met the Mabee Challenge of raising $12 million for the math, science and engineering center, the largest capital campaign in our history. The center will help support UIW students, the majority of whom are first-generation college students, as they study a variety of subjects, such as math, biology and computer science. We have now begun the final phase of the campaign, to raise $2.7 million to cover the added costs of construction and technology. These funds also are needed to reflect future needs as our student body grows. Groundbreaking for the center will take place in spring 2003, and construction and renovations should be completed by late 2005.
There were many other things we accomplished during the year. Due to space limitations I can’t list them all here, so let me give you a few of the highlights. We surpassed the 4,000-student mark for the first time; we opened the Ann Barshop Natatorium; and we awarded the first-ever Ph.D. degrees. In addition, our basketball team reached the NCAA Div. II post-season tournament; UIW was ranked second in teacher preparation in Texas by the U.S. Department of Education; and U.S. News & World Report cited our online graduate business program as being one of the finest in the country.
I hope this message has given you a sense of our activities during the 2001-2002 school year. Our goal for the 2002-2003 year is to sustain the momentum that allowed last year to be among our best ever. For more information, I encourage you to read this Annual Report. In the meantime, let me thank all of you for your support. It’s that support that allows us to continue fulfilling Incarnate Word's goal of offering students the best possible educational opportunity within a context of faith.
Louis J. Agnese, Jr., Ph.D.
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