“Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff:

As we begin to wrap up this fall semester, it is easy to become caught up in our to-do lists and schedules filled with assignments and tasks — from papers and presentations to events, meetings, and practices.

At Valpo, we have much to be thankful for: friends, colleagues, and classmates; a growing campus filled with diversity of perspectives, cultures, expressions, and talents; extraordinary student organizations, clubs, and teams; and captivating events that enrich us and bring us together as a community.

This Thanksgiving, I am reminded of the powerful words of Ralph Waldo Emerson, who reminds us that being grateful is a habit, one we must actively cultivate and foster as we give thanks for all of life’s blessings.

In keeping with the spirit of these words, I want to take this opportunity to let you know how thankful I am to count you all among the blessings God has gifted Valparaiso University. And I want to thank you for all that you do to make this University a distinctive and inviting place where people of all traditions and cultures can pursue their passions and find their purpose.

We have so much for which to be thankful. I hope this Thanksgiving you will join me in taking a few moments to express your gratitude and appreciation for each other and for all the blessings we have received this year.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving,


Mark A. Heckler