ALLEGANY, N.Y. – At the recent St. Bonaventure University Board of Trustees meeting on campus, trustees and guests attended a festive evening reception hosted by the friars at the Friary on St. Patrick’s Day. During the course of that reception, John O’Connor took the opportunity to express the friars’ on-going appreciation and support for the University and announce the province’s gift to the University’s campaign.
He spoke of the history of the friars at St. Bonaventure University and of the tradition of being partners with the administration, faculty and staff in service to the students and the entire university community.
“When looking at the priorities of the province, education has been and continues to be one of the main priorities and ministries of our province. Therefore, on behalf of the friars of Holy Name Province, I am very happy to announce that we are giving $1.5 million to the capital campaign of the University to continue the mission of the University and the province,” he said.
In addition to financial support, John said HNP is “also encouraging those entering our community and friars currently in the province to consider ministries in higher education.”
During the Board of Trustees’ weekend meetings, the trustees dedicated their time, in the first of many sessions, to an immersion experience through a series of workshops on student life issues. The day began at lunch with the students in the student dining hall. An enthusiastic conversation with many students was a valuable transition into the workshop sessions.
The workshops included Student Well-Being: a study on the first-year experience of the Class of 2008 by Dr. Chuck Walker; the National Survey of Student Engagement that evaluates the extent to which first-year and senior students engage in educational practices associated with high levels of learning and development; a report on the hurricane relief trip, BonaResponds; the social life of today’s student; the spiritual journey of the millennials; and a report on the President’s Commission on the Responsible Use of Alcohol.
The trustees said they came away gratified by the experience of conversation with the students. Also, they are now more aware of the issue areas that Student Life services must address, including the current generation’s addictive issues and its spiritual search. The trustees then resolved to adopt the National Survey of Student Engagement for the administration to use as a tool for developing strategic plans in Student Life, University Ministries, and related program areas to help drive goal-setting for future performance.
The Board members also discussed marketing and enrollment needs. Board members authorized a market research proposal relative to the undergraduate program. The Board also approved a preliminary budget with the final budget to be submitted in June.
The trustees approved a series of construction-related issues, which include:
- Irene and Paul Bogoni Rare Books Library as an addition to Friedsam Memorial Library;
- Revenue bonds to finance renovation of student housing and dining facilities;
- Construction of an addition to Hickey Dining Hall;
- A reception gift pledge by Thomas M. Marra to construct a synthetic turf baseball field and associated structures.
The Board also approved the awarding of degrees to candidates for graduate, undergraduate, and honorary degrees at Commencement Exercises to be held May 14.
A report from the capital campaign, The Anniversary Campaign for St. Bonaventure University, demonstrated that the University is on target to achieve a goal of $90 million.