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Our History Helps Forge Our Future

Sister Joan Lescinski photo

June 2017


When you work in an iconic building that was constructed in 1885, it's easy to understand the timelessness of this remarkable university.

On the other hand, having recently said goodbye to the Class of 2017 and now preparing for the arrival of a new first year class, it is hard not to think how quickly the years pass.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of my inauguration as president of St. Ambrose. It is an appointment for which I remain humbly grateful and a ministry whose important responsibilities I never take for granted.

This past decade has been eventful, meaningful, and, as is true any place where important work is done, not without its challenges. I am awed by the talented and dedicated faculty and staff who make this institution great. I am proud of the students and alumni who make the work we do here so profoundly rewarding.

Anniversaries are welcome milestones, and reflection and review are essential to growth. There is a very impressive structure on the north end of campus that serves to reminds us, however, that our focus and our efforts must be trained on the future.

The largest single capital project we have ever undertaken, the new Wellness and Recreation Center will carry this university deep into a still relatively young century. It will help students remain active and healthy for generations to come. Meanwhile, an evolving curriculum-one eternally grounded in the liberal arts and the Catholic Intellectual Tradition-will prepare these same students to work, live and serve in a fast-changing world.

I am pleased to note the Building Our Future campaign stands within $1.25 million of an ambitious $18.5 million goal. More than half of this total comes to us through the generous support of first-time major donors, which also is a very important step toward the future.

As we build that future, we should not forget our rich legacy of generational family support. It is a central strength of St. Ambrose, an essential piece of the familial sense of community that so distinguishes this university.

Today, two buildings stand tall on opposite ends of our campus, one very old and one brand new, and each impressive in its own way. They serve to remind us that St. Ambrose is at once grounded by its past and bound for the future.

Sister Joan Lescinski, CSJ, PhD

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