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A Letter from the President
Transformation is at the heart of Jesuit philosophy.
Transformations, however, are seldom sudden, and they are usually the result of hard, carefully planned work. Yes, Ignatius of Loyola had a spiritual conversion while in Spain, but bringing the Jesuit Order into being took a lifetime of arduous planning and resolute work.
At Santa Clara University we pursue an ideal of creating a better world through a search for truth and for the Author of Truth and the Source of Beauty who animates us. With the search comes transformation, and with transformation comes personal and collective growth.
Today, a great deal of such work toward transformation—on individual as well as institutional levels—is underway at Santa Clara University. For example, we are transforming our teaching with the use of technology in new classroom configurations, online courses, apps, and e-books. We are also making physical changes, transforming the heart of campus by converting Palm Drive into a new pedestrian mall and highlighting the Mission Church as the center of the University. Most importantly, we are transforming our students, cultivating in them the skills and the will to be change agents—leaders with a passion to transform their world into one that is more just, more humane, and more sustainable.
The examples of transformation and dynamic education in this report tell the stories of how our common mission comes alive in our students and in our community. You will read how the SCU faculty is using computer games to deepen students’ empathy while also teaching them research skills. You will see how the campus community is shrinking its carbon footprint and, in the process, teaching students to be better stewards of their world. You will learn how we have created a nucleus of faculty members who not only are collaborating on biosciences research projects, but also bringing these projects into the classrooms at SCU and area high schools. You will see how our new Academy of Blended Learning is forging stronger relationships with our local Diocese and helping K–12 teachers incorporate technology tools into their teaching. And you will read about how our emphasis on social entrepreneurship is changing the face of study abroad for our Global Fellows and Food and Agribusiness students. Ignatius of Loyola would be proud of such innovation that opens minds, changes hearts, and benefits the world.
I hope you will find this report—and its stories of transformation at Santa Clara—a truly inspirational reflection of our mission. As Peter Hans Kolvenbach, S.J., said, “The real measure of our Jesuit universities lies in who our students become.”
Michael E. Engh, S.J.