Dear Faculty,

Welcome to this second installment of my quarterly newsletter that I have specifically created for you, our faculty. As we near the end of the fall semester, I want to share my appreciation to you for the work you do with our Cardinals and for the extraordinary opportunities that you have created for their formation. While there are many, too many to list in fact, I would like to share my thanks to all of the faculty who have taken part in the FLIGHT mentor training. We are just at the beginning, and you have made wonderful progress in shaping what will be a program of distinction for UIW. This is yet another example of faculty-led innovations that make UIW’s transformational education possible.

Praised be the Incarnate Word!

Thomas M. Evans, PhD


Research at UIW

I have shared with you before that I am committed to telling faculty stories and to sharing more about the work you do as scholars. Since the summer, we have been producing a video that highlights some of that work, as well as its impact on the disciplines and on the students. I invite you to be the first to view the video below. We will be sharing it with our community and with leaders of peer institutions via an email campaign. Future episodes will soon be in production.


Revisiting Faculty Questions

This newsletter is one of the outcomes from two meetings held at the end of the spring semester: one with UIW deans and the second with Faculty Senate representatives. During the meetings, it became apparent that there was a need for more frequent and more significant communication between the Office of the President and UIW faculty. Faculty Senate representatives shared questions pooled from faculty that I was glad to answer for those present and those joining on Zoom. Both meetings covered many questions and concerns over a wide range of topics. I would like to revisit some of those topics now and offer updates to progress since we met.

The Strategic Plan, which includes the Vision, Strategic Priorities and Campus Master Plan, continues to guide our institutional growth as it has since it was established in 2018. The pandemic caused progress to slow as attention and resources were directed toward our institutional and academic response. However, this semester has seen significant progress across many of the plan’s eight Strategic Priorities and the Campus Master Plan (CMP). I invite you to visit the UIW Strategic Plan site from time to time to find updates to each priority and new information regarding the CMP. 


Each Strategic Priority is led by a champion and a priority committee formed of faculty and staff. Since the July retirements of Sr. Kathleen Coughlin, CCVI, and Dr. Barbara Aranda-Naranjo, two priorities have welcomed new champions.


In addition to posting on the Strategic Priority pages, I plan to share select updates with you in this quarterly newsletter. A dedicated section was included in our first newsletter and again below.

Over the semester, more progress has been made in this area. The FTE position providing grant support was moved from Development to the Provost’s division, specifically the Office of Research and Graduate Studies reporting to Dr. Mark Nijland, dean of Research and Graduate Studies. A position description was created, the opening was posted and the department is now accepting applications. 

In the interim, Dr. Nijland has absorbed many of the position’s core responsibilities with positive results. Since January, approximately $40 million in grant proposals have been processed, more than in any other previous calendar year on record. Dr. Nijland shared that extramural grant proposals for the 2022 calendar year are up 94 percent over 2019, the previous highest year for grant proposals, with a success rate of 20 percent across all federal and state funding sources. He attributes that success to faculty commitment to research and scholarship. 

Since we met in May, Human Resources has unveiled a full Telework and Alternative Work Schedule Policy. Available on the HR website, the policy outlines criteria for eligible employees and training resources for those taking part and for supervising managers. 

As I mentioned in our May meeting, our organizational structure has fewer employees reporting directly to me than at any time since 2016. As our university grows, some of the titles of these employees may have changed to reflect new departmental oversight, but the larger functions are essentially the same. All are Mission-critical and include enrollment, legal affairs, international affairs, academic affairs, finance and university operations, fundraising and Mission.

Please see a list of UIW's vice presidents below.

UIW John Bury

John Bury

Chief of Staff and Vice President for Strategy and Enrollment

UIW Cindy Escamilla

Cindy Escamilla

Vice President of Legal Affairs and General Counsel

UIW Marcos Fragoso

Marcos Fragoso

Vice President for International Affairs

UIW Caroline Goulet

Dr. Caroline Goulet

Interim Provost and Associate Provost for Health Professions

UIW Darrell Haydon

Dr. Darrell L. Haydon

Chief Financial Officer and Vice President for Administrative Services

UIW Rick Kimbrough

Rick Kimbrough

Vice President for External Relations and Chief Development Officer 

UIW Sr. Walter Maher CCVI

Sr. Walter Maher, CCVI

Vice President for Mission and Ministry 


Strategic Priority Spotlights

As in our last installment, this and all future faculty newsletters will include an update on select Strategic Priorities that have particular relevance to faculty and the academic functions of the University.

Strategic Priority: Double the endowment over the next 10 years to better support students through graduation

UIW Campaign Celebration

On the evening of Light the Way, UIW also marked another milestone. After five years, the “Their Journey. Your Legacy." capital campaign celebrated more than $100 million in funds raised. Of those funds, nearly $30 million went to fund scholarships and nearly $60 million funded programs, grants and faculty development. The campaign also supported improvements to our infrastructure, a critical component to the student experience. While we are thrilled with the progress made thus far, the work of ensuring robust scholarship opportunities and faculty and programmatic support is never done and work continue


Strategic Priority: Improve UIW’s infrastructure of facilities, staffing levels and business processes

UIW Broadway Campus aerial

Eighteen simultaneous infrastructure projects across UIW campuses are currently underway, the most complex among them being the Founders Hall renovation.

Founders Hall

Plans and designs for floors zero through three have been drafted and are moving forward. This updated timeline showcases key steps in the process:

  • In October, our application to the Texas Historical Commission was submitted to recognize the building for its mid-century architecture style. 
  • A response to the application is expected by mid-December. 
  • In January, design development is expected to be completed and initial demolition of key areas are planned. 
  • Should there be no additional delays, construction is expected to begin in April.

Student Welcome Center

Another project that I would like to point your attention to is the development of a new Student Welcome Center set for the Student Engagement Center. The lower-level bookstore space is being renovated for a new, modern destination for new, incoming and prospective students to learn more about being a Cardinal. The goal for completion is set for spring.


Provost Search

Throughout the semester, the search firm WittKieffer has been assisting us with a nationwide search for a permanent Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs. For two months, the firm has been accepting applications and candidate materials via email at UIWProvost@wittkieffer.com and via their website, where you can find the position overview. 

During this last week of November, candidate materials have been posted for review by UIW’s search committee, the members of which are listed below. 

  • John Bury, Chief of Staff and VP for Strategy and Enrollment, Chair
  • Glenn Ambrose, Faculty Senate President and Professor, Religious Studies
  • Dr. Srihari Narayanan, Professor, Optometry
  • Dr. Kathleen Tilton, Faculty Senate Standing Chair, Assistant Professor Nursing
  • Dr. Sandra Guzman-Foster, Associate Professor, Education
  • Sr. Theresa McGrath, CCVI, Congregational Appointee to the Board of Trustees
  • Julianna Sandoval, Student Government Association President
  • Dr. Jeanne Scott, Dean, H-E-B School of Business and Administration
  • Dr. Earlanda Williams, Associate Dean, School of Osteopathic Medicine
  • Marcos Fragoso, Vice President, International Affairs

Before the end of the year, the committee plans to meet again to select the candidates who will be invited to take part in first round interviews scheduled for early January. Finalists will be invited to campus for in-person interviews, after which the committee will share feedback and recommendations with me.


Fall Enrollment Overview


I often say that we are many parts but One Word. Our university system is complex and far reaching, extending beyond our historic Broadway campus and our health professions campuses in San Antonio to include students of our two campus systems in Mexico and those joining us from anywhere in the world via Global Online. 

10,239 Global Enrollment

  • 7,250: Broadway campus, Health Professions campuses and School of Professional Studies Enrollment
  • 1,818: Campus Bajio Enrollment 
  • 957: Centro Universitario Incarnate Word Enrollment
  • 214: Global Online Enrollment

Fall census data shows important growth in key areas, which is remarkable given the national decline in student enrollment reported this year.

  • Notably, new student enrollment has risen over 2021 and 2020. This fall’s first-time-in-college cohort is the largest since 2019, the last pre-COVID class, and the second largest since 2013.
  • New transfer student enrollment has shown a small increase over the previous year and is at its highest since fall 2017.
  • New graduate student enrollment has also increased over both 2021 and 2020 census data and is at its highest since fall 2018.

Engaging the Board of Trustees

As in-person gatherings have become more frequent, I have worked to create more opportunities for members of our Board of Trustees to engage faculty and students and learn more about academic support at UIW. Next week, trustees will reconvene for committees and our quarterly meeting of the full board.

This quarter’s board report will focus on technology for operations and process improvement, service to students and pedagogy. I have invited Kathy Bottaro, assistant provost, Office of Teaching, Learning and Technology, and Neil Schroeder, CIO and associate vice president for Information Technology, to present on our sweeping upgrades to digital infrastructure and the role that technology plays in supporting teaching and learning.

Additionally, the board will take part in demonstrations from three members of our faculty utilizing technology innovations and some of their students. 

  • Dr. Cynthia Voyce, Clinical Learning Center director for the Ila Faye Miller School of Nursing and Health Professions, will showcase simulations and virtual reality use in nursing instruction.
  • Dr. Adam Watkins, assistant dean of the School of Media and Design and 3D Animation and Game Design program coordinator, will share how he readies students for roles in cutting-edge professions.
  • Dr. Michael Frye, professor of Engineering in the School of Mathematics, Science and Engineering, will highlight the work of the undergraduate-run Autonomous Vehicles Lab.

Mark Your Calendars

Spring 2023 President’s Wine and Cheese with the Faculty

February 16, 2022, 4 p.m., Student Engagement Center

An informal evening of heavy hors d’oeurves, wine and great company, this event is an opportunity to speak to one another as colleagues. An invitation is forthcoming, and I hope to see you then.

Published December 2022