Dear Graduates, Students and Colleagues,
Dr. Samuel Johnson, the 18th century author and moralist once wrote, “He that hopes to look back hereafter with satisfaction upon past years must learn to know the present value of single minutes, and endeavour to let no particle of time fall useless to the ground.”
The days grow longer and the campus is festooned with trees and plants flowering in anticipation of summer. Surrounded by a world blossoming with possibilities, we say farewell to another academic year at Valparaiso University, and most especially, to our graduating students and retiring faculty and staff.
To those in our community who are retiring, thank you for your years of exemplary service. You have given Valparaiso University, and its students, your utmost dedication and care. You have brought consummate skill to the classroom and engaged in scholarship that expanded knowledge in your chosen field. Through your vocation, you have demonstrated to generations of Valpo students what it means to lead and serve in church and society. We thank God for your gifts and pray that this next stage of life will be blessed.
To our soon-to-be graduates, you have left an indelible mark on this University. Many of you have found your path at Valpo, beginning your great journey and strengthening your gifts here. As you continue your journey — whether it is back home or in some location on the other side of the globe — please know that those you leave behind care deeply about you and wish you great success. You are always welcome here, and we look forward to your return in the coming years with anticipation and joy as you come to discover that returning to Valparaiso University is like coming home again,
To our returning students, you represent the next chapter in Valparaiso University’s future. I encourage you to use this summer to reflect on your accomplishments so far, to clarify your goals, and to prepare for what lies ahead. Keep your minds and hearts open to what God may have in store for you. There will be both challenges and great opportunities in the year to come.
To Valpo’s dedicated faculty and staff, thank you for your continuing commitment to our students and their success. This has been a year of renewal and change at Valpo as together we lay the foundation for the University’s future success. I deeply appreciate the gifts of your great energy, keen intellect, significant time, and nurturing attention. The fruits of your effort are evident in our graduating class, in our returning students, in the encouraging estimates for the incoming class, in the new look of our institution, in the appearance of our buildings and grounds, in the quality of the food we serve, and in how we strive to operate this University each day.
We have much to celebrate this year and much to anticipate. As we close this chapter in the history of Valparaiso University, I trust that you look to the summer with deep satisfaction, knowing that you, following Dr. Johnson’s good counsel, have left no particle of time fall useless.
Congratulations to the Class of 2011 and congratulations to every member of the Valparaiso University community on your achievements this year. I wish you Godspeed and many blessings in the months ahead.
Mark A. Heckler