Springing Into 2018

As January comes into full swing, with cold weather and College Football Championship fever gripping much of Georgia, nearly 7,000 students begin their Spring semester today at Middle Georgia State University. Approximately 1 in 12 of those students have something in common with our incoming Provost, Dr. Jon Anderson—they are not only starting a new semester and a new calendar year, but today is their first day at the university.

We are excited to welcome growth and new faces in our community, as we begin seeing the encouraging results of a concerted effort across departments and divisions to drive enrollment—one that continues through this week. It has been five years since the birth of our consolidated institution and we have seen not only change, but progress in how we work together.

In the coming weeks, I will share more on where we are as an institution in our Annual State of the University Address on January 23, 2018 at 2pm. For the first time, the address will take place on one of our commuter campuses. I will address the Middle Georgia State community from Warner Robins, where we will also host friends and colleagues that afternoon for the ribbon cutting on the new STEM Wing of Oak Hall—a state funded $5 million investment in science education, where students began taking classes this morning.

The address will be live-streamed to Macon, Cochran, Dublin, and Eastman, and will highlight the very important work that lies ahead in the second half of this Academic Year. We will finish our first university Strategic Plan and begin developing our next one. Dr. Anderson will lead those conversations and I look forward to working with him as we engage faculty, staff, students, and our community partners in shaping the future of Middle Georgia.

While it is no secret that I am better versed in soccer than in American football, I would be remiss if I didn’t take the opportunity to wish our sister institution, the University of Georgia, the best of luck tonight. The fact their quarterback was playing football at Houston County High School—the alma mater of many Middle Georgia State Knights—just one year ago is a point of pride for our region. Whatever jersey you plan to wear, I hope you’ll stay warm, keep the family rivalries in check, and come back tomorrow energized for what is sure to be a great 2018!