Dear alumni, parents and friends
On Aug. 31, the University of Delaware greeted the largest freshman class in its history—3,839 talented students, eager to begin their Blue Hen years.
It was an auspicious start to a great semester, one that saw UD grow bigger in more ways than one. In October, the University signed a purchase agreement for 272 acres of land west of South College Avenue, property formerly occupied by the Chrysler Assembly Plant.
The size of the property and its proximity to UD make it the perfect site on which to grow the University for years to come. The acquisition gives us a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to enhance the education we provide students and to significantly expand applied research in areas like health sciences and alternative energy technologies. We’re excited to develop the property and continue powering Delaware’s economic development.
Today, of course, growing bigger means growing globally. This fall, we established the Institute for Global Studies to extend UD’s international reach and amplify its impact by building and strengthening global partnerships. UD’s presence and prominence abroad are rising rapidly. In October, I visited Songdo, South Korea, a modern, vibrant city where the University is exploring establishing a campus. The campus would allow us to offer a UD education to a truly global group of students—students not only from Korea but from throughout Asia, Europe and North America.
When I left Songdo, I headed to Seoul for UD’s first-ever international alumni reception. The turnout was fantastic: We welcomed more than 100 alums, English Language Institute graduates, visiting scholars and friends of the University. It was great to be on the other side of the world and yet find myself among so many people with an abiding connection to Delaware.
There’s so much going on at UD, more than I have space to recount. You’ll read about some of our big projects in this edition of the UD Messenger. Don’t miss the stories about the Delaware Environmental Institute (page 8) and the planned interdisciplinary science and engineering building that will house it (read story). You’ll also see several profiles of UD alumni making a real and significant difference in the world. Each is an inspiration and the best motivation I can think of to keep UD growing—growing bigger and better.
Patrick T. Harker
President, University of Delaware