Wow. It is September. That happened fast.

Whether you have been on campus working or in class, or were away for the summer, I hope you took some time to enjoy the beautiful weather and the opportunity to take an extra deep breath or two and rejuvenate.

First, a huge welcome to NESAD, which has come home! NESAD has moved from leased space on Arlington Street to the heart of campus, and we couldn’t be more excited. Completely reimagined space on four floors of the Sawyer Building is now alive with activity. New adjoining classrooms have been designed to foster interaction and innovation. Students will design on high-powered computers in multipurpose classrooms and on easels in perfectly lit studios. There are galleries, a woodshop, a materials library and a print-making studio. And there’s hardly a wall where artwork can’t be displayed.

This move will help us to better support art and design students, faculty, and staff, but also allow us to leverage the expertise and creativity of the art and design community to advance design thinking and interdisciplinary initiatives while expanding the presence of the visual arts across the Suffolk campus. The opportunities for collaboration are boundless.

As this dynamic Suffolk Experience piece about the new space shows, our art and design students “bring vision, talent, enthusiasm, and often tremendous amounts of coffee—and leave with sharpened skills, industry contacts, and portfolios bulging with work. In between they forge bonds and find community.”

We couldn’t be happier to have them in the heart of campus, and we look forward to forging stronger bonds with the entire NESAD community.

Yes, the summer flew by, and a lot has happened since we celebrated with our graduates of 2017. In June, the Board of Trustees held the last meeting of the fiscal year and in that meeting took several significant steps. New trustees were elected. The new bylaws adopted in May 2016 were revised to further improve them based on the experience of the past year and in alignment with practices of good governance. The updated bylaws have been posted on the website, along with a brief summary of significant changes.

Also in June, the chairman of the board and committee chairs were evaluated even as the board reflected on its work (and mine) over the course of last year.

In August, we signed the final agreement with INTO, creating INTO Suffolk, a pathways partnership called for in our strategic plan and designed to further advance our educational mission and our international enrollment. Next week we will welcome more than 100 INTO representatives to campus for a familiarization visit. Highlights to come.

Of course we will have both opportunities and challenges ahead, and some of our challenges will be connected to those of the nation as we work to continue to stand for inclusion, which remains at the core of who we are as an institution. But we are committed to overcoming our challenges collaboratively, and we will continue to provide an exceptional educational experience for all of our students. As we move into the new semester I look forward to connecting with as many of you as possible. I want to hear your thoughts and share mine with you so that we can move forward, continuing to all row in the same direction. I am looking forward to another great year.



Marisa J. Kelly
Acting President