With the remarkable progress that Daemen College has made as we move to new levels of excellence, the college is a changed place, both literally and figuratively. Looking back on all that Daemen has achieved since I had the privilege of joining this exceptional college in February 2013, I am amazed at all that we have accomplished. Each and every faculty and staff member has devoted a great deal of time, commitment, and hard work to making Daemen the outstanding institution it is today.
You can see change everywhere on campus. In Duns Scotus, you’ll find a new Veterans Center for our growing population of student veterans, a state-of-the-art computer classroom, a new and much-needed 70-seat classroom, and newly constructed offices for athletics and the Education and Modern Languages departments and Counseling Services. Over 100 trees and other landscaping improvements grace our front lawn, creating a wonderful green space. In place of old Serra Hall, you will find a brand new parking lot to accommodate our growing student population. In the Wick Campus Center, you’ll see a completely refurbished kitchen and dining hall, a new game room entrance, and a new student chapel, which was relocated from Duns Scotus. These and other physical improvements symbolize the kinds of growth and enhancements that will continue to make Daemen even better for our entire college community.
Beyond this, Daemen has marked some significant milestones. As you will read in this issue of Daemen Today, we are advancing rapidly to full membership in the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the gold standard for college athletics. NCAA Division II is the perfect fit for Daemen, in that DII emphasizes a healthy balance of academics and athletics, a balance that reflects our college’s mission and values. I am proud that our studentathletes are among the best and brightest on campus, with student-athletes achieving an overall GPA of 3.2.
This success is paying dividends. Daemen is welcoming a growing number of students to campus. We exceeded our enrollment goals, with spring undergraduate enrollment increasing 3 percent and graduate enrollment going up 3.1 percent. And our students are succeeding in the classroom while also making a significant impact locally and internationally by actively engaging in community service projects. The generosity of our alumni, donors, and friends is stronger than ever, a sign of their belief in Daemen and our commitment to excellence. Overall giving increased 25 percent compared to the previous year, and alumni giving rose 42 percent. Every gift touches the college community, but, most importantly, it touches the lives of our students in many positive ways. I extend my deepest thanks to you for your ongoing support of our very special college.
We certainly have much to celebrate at Daemen. In the end, all that we do here is focused on providing an exceptional educational experience to our students, affording them every opportunity to become successful professionals, and preparing them to go on to become proud Daemen alumni. Go Wildcats!
Gary A. Olson, President