Letter from the Chair

Submitted by Qanani A Kalil on

Dear LSJ Alumni Community:

As the school year ends, and as graduation season consumes campus, one is reminded yet again of life’s transitions.  Any such transition, for me, is always tinged with a taste of the bittersweet, as excitement about the new mingles with sadness at the passing of the old.

It is with just this emotion that I compose this last letter to the LSJ alumni community in my role as chair.  As you may already know – or can read about here – I am stepping down after nine rewarding years.

This has easily been the most satisfying job I’ve ever had.  That is entirely because of the opportunity I’ve been given to work with such a tremendously concerned, engaged, and giving community. 

I am proud of the work we have accomplished together these past nine years.  We graduated to becoming a Department.  We created three new endowed funds.  We moved into a permanent – and now thriving – home on the mezzanine of Smith Hall.  We saw sharp growth in student interest in the major.  We expanded our active learning opportunities, including a well-developed prison-based education effort.  We became one of the more diverse communities on campus.  And we created a strong set of connections between our current students and alums.

Throughout these changes, I was always able to tap the impressive energies of our faculty, staff, current students, and alumni.  If I can claim any success as chair, it is entirely because members of this community so consistently responded when I called upon them to do so.  For that, I cannot convey adequate thanks.

I trust you will respond to my successor, Katherine Beckett, just as generously as you did to me.  She shares my strong concern for this community and the transformative change that it can help accomplish.  Please assist her as she moves the Department forward in interesting and compelling ways.  [To get a measure of LSJ’s impact, watch our most recent convocation video.]

So, please enjoy the news of LSJ that we provide here, and please know that your support is always greatly, greatly appreciated!


Steve Herbert