A Message from President Williams

President Williams writes to the Muhlenberg Community on his first day as President

 Wednesday, July 1, 2015 00:11 PM

To the Muhlenberg Community:

On this, my first day as President of Muhlenberg College, I want you to know how delighted I am to be with you – and part of this wonderful College. During the past few months, I have been so touched by the welcoming spirit, the tremendous sense of community, and the true devotion to academic, artistic, and athletic excellence that are such core elements of Muhlenberg.

Everyone loves to join a winner.  President Helm has left the College in a condition of strength and there is a solid foundation on which to build for the future.  He built a substantial legacy and I know we all feel deep appreciation for his leadership over the past 12 years.

Going forward, I am committed firmly to engaging as many members of our community as possible in charting our future course.  As you may already know, I have been reaching out to as many members of our community as possible over the past several months, including trustees, faculty, staff, students, alumni, parents and friends, to gather perspectives about Muhlenberg and its rich history.  Clearly, what unites everyone is a deep love for Muhlenberg and affection for the special blend of creativity, warmth, rigor, and purpose that shapes both who we are and who we aspire to be – with the strength of our academic programs as the touchstone.

To broaden and deepen the conversation, President Helm and I agreed several months ago to hire a strategic consulting firm, The Cohl Group, to help us engage our community and to distill and articulate our core narratives. Since then, we have conducted countless interviews and discussion groups both on campus and in various cities throughout the nation. This work promises to be a tremendous resource as we begin to shape our strategy.

The conversation will be an ongoing one.  My plan is to utilize a wide variety of communications channels – ranging from in-person, face-to-face meetings to webcasts to social media – that will help us stay in step.  In fact, during the next few weeks, more Muhlenberg alumni, students and parents will receive a brief survey that continues the conversation.  The survey will afford us an opportunity to organize and examine our collective views on such questions as:  Where do we think Muhlenberg is strong? What aspects of the College should we treat as most dear and never change?  On the other hand, where do we need to focus our efforts on improving?

Together, we can and will continue to build upon Muhlenberg’s strong foundation.  Indeed, the power of our community is evident with every door we open for each other. 

I am so grateful for the warm welcome Diane and I have received from the Muhlenberg community.  I look forward to working with everyone to ensure Muhlenberg College continues to thrive and grow even stronger in the years ahead.

Thank you,

John I. Williams, Jr.