From Our President
Every fall, during Homecoming Weekend, UD honors its most promising young(ish) alumni with Presidential Citations for Outstanding Achievement. And every summer, during Alumni Weekend, we celebrate still more Blue Hens with induction into the Alumni Association Wall of Fame. The distinction between the two honors is a matter of years: While both recognize significant feats of professional success and public service, the former go to alums in the first half (or so) of their post-UD professional lives, and the latter to alums regardless of graduation date—basically, when the accomplishments are so numerous or so important that we figure we can’t possibly expect much more.
These two honors—combined—go to just 15, maybe 20, alumni a year. They do, after all, recognize exceptional achievement. But UD has more than 145,000 alumni working and serving in the world today, and so many are doing extraordinary things—so many are advancing UD’s mission through their families, their communities, their careers and their causes.
You’ll read about some of these alums inside: Delaware’s 2011 Teacher of the Year Joseph Masiello, who greets each day and each sixth-grader as a chance to change the world; “Sugar Daddy” Dana Herbert, owner of Desserts by Dana, and winner of the TLC reality hit Next Great Baker; Steve Liberati, whose entrepreneurial career is fueled by his commitment to community; Lisa Blunt Rochester (Delawareans may know her better as state government pioneer Lisa Blunt-Bradley), who turned her experience as a “trailing spouse” in China into a Thrive-ing career as an author; Stacey Broomall and Nicole Rosenzweig, scientists working to reduce U.S. vulnerability to biological threats; William Christens-Barry, a physicist using advanced imaging techniques to reveal mysteries of the world’s most important antiquities; and Kenneth Rowe, the first North Korean fighter pilot to defect to the West (with a prized MiG-15) at the end of the Korean War.
In their details, these stories are unique. But in their effect, they’re emblematic of many more. Thousands of alumni are living lives like these, delivering on the promises UD has made and the principles we’ve championed, committing to excellence and to others.
There are many measures by which a university may judge its quality—its faculty, its support, its research or rankings—but surely the most telling is the men and women whom the university graduates. That’s what we celebrate every year during Alumni Weekend; you are what we celebrate. And so I hope to see you back on campus, June 3-5. Come back to renew your relationship with UD and reconnect with the people who’ve made this University everything it is and everything it will be.
Patrick T. Harker
President, University of Delaware