As we remember in gratitude those fallen American heroes on Memorial Day, the holiday also bids us to acknowledge that summer is just around the corner. One may think of summertime on a university campus as being quiet, abandoned, lackluster. But that is certainly not the case at the Batten College this summer. Or any summer for that matter.
On May 5th, I watched proudly as our engineering and engineering technology graduates walked across the stage at the Ted Constant Center to receive their diplomas. With commencement now a month behind us, the College redirects its focus to our students still under our tutelage. Summer learning has begun as the semester's classes are already in full-swing.
Students fill hallways, classrooms, and labs proving the summer semester to be just as academically demanding as fall or spring semester. The bustle of students reminds me that the pursuit of academic excellence knows no holiday when there is such a thirst for knowledge. The seasonal shift cannot quiet students' eagerness.
Offices still have occupants, and prospective and new students find their way around campus on tours. In between classes, current students make their way to the Mall or to the Webb Center to take in some sun and moderation offered by the season. And, at the Learning Commons, study spaces find inhabitants when exams roll around. Unlike initial notions of an utterly abandoned space, campus is rather full during what is characteristically considered the academic off-season.
The summer months also offer the opportunity for students and faculty to devote more hours to more complex research projects. What is more, it affords the time to evaluate the processes we have engaged in during the previous academic year and look into the potential of happenings on the horizon. From new research opportunities to our five annual University- and College-level planning retreats to the promise of a new building to our 50-year milestone celebration that awaits us just beyond this summer, lackluster does not describe the scene around Kaufman Hall in the least.
Although it is a time of year that may bring some sadness as academic cohorts graduate and move onto career ventures, the activity that the summer commands will surely occupy our minds, bringing us quickly back to August and the start of a new academic year. Until then, summer classes, new faces, and extended research pursuits fill our days.
Published on: June 1, 2012