On Wednesday night, students, faculty, and staff of Marietta College gathered in the McDonough Auditorium to learn what to expect from their campus in the future. The new college president, Bill Ruud, delivered the state of the campus address outlining the college’s goals for the next few years.
These goals included an increased endowment in order to give students more scholarship opportunities and better facilities, greater student enrollment, and more student involvement. The Alumni Association is also implementing new standards of giving. Next year, alumni will be encouraged to donate an amount equal to their graduation year- with a decimal point wherever they choose. The idea is to ease them into annual giving.
After a forty-minute address given by President Ruud, a panel was introduced to facilitate a question and answer session with attendees. The most popular questions concerned what was to be done about increasing campus diversity. The most common answer was that students needed to become involved with the process. It was made clear that any suggestion a student has should be given today- not in three years.
“We need your help,” said Ruud, addressing the students in the audience. He encouraged students to show faculty and staff how to better utilize social media, noting that the school needs to have a greater media presence. He even outlined a plan to advertise on billboards, airports and in movie theatre commercials.
The creative advertising ideas kept coming. Instead of “little-bitty Marietta College parking sticker[s],” said Ruud, the campus may introduce large bumper stickers. As of next week, every student on campus will be given a free Marietta College t-shirt to wear. The Student Government Association is also doing a t-shirt swap. Students who donate old school or athletic team shirts can receive a Marietta College shirt in return. These ideas were intended to open a dialogue between students, faculty, and staff.
“It was a great opportunity to hear about the future of Marietta College and have a chance to have questions or concerns answered,” said Student Government Association vice president, Paige Berschet.
The event also focused on a few encouraging facts. Compared to freshman enrollment last year, the school has almost 90 more students expected to be enrolled at this time, according to the panel. There is also a healthy balance of male and female students in the expected class.
“I wanted to hear the vision that President Ruud has for the college as I think there are many improvements to be made on campus, as well as strengths to promote more,” said Berschet when asked why she attended.