Presidential Perspective - June 23, 2022
Baylor Students, Faculty, Staff and Parents:
Summers are always a time of transition – from high school to college … residence halls to back home … college to work-life … and here in Texas, 85-degree temperatures to the 100s. This transition time is certainly hitting the Livingstones this summer, as our daughter Shelby recently graduated from Truett Seminary and will soon start her first job halfway across the country. The First Gent and I are traveling with Shelby en route to her new home away from Waco. I am excited to focus on being a mom this week as Shelby starts this new adventure!
A few updates for this week:
- Each semester Baylor recognizes undergraduates for their outstanding academic work with the Dean’s Academic Honor List. My congratulations to the more than 4,800 students named to the Dean’s List for the Spring 2022 semester. To be honored on the Dean’s List, students have earned a minimum semester GPA of 3.70 with no grade lower than a “C” while enrolled in at least 12 graded semester hours. I also extend my appreciation to our faculty, who deeply value teaching undergraduate students and engaging them in the transformative experiences – animated by our Christian faith – that distinguish a Baylor education.
- Today marks the 50th anniversary of Title IX, the landmark federal law signed in 1972 that prohibits gender discrimination in educational programs and activities receiving federal financial assistance. The historic legislation has positively impacted the lives of hundreds of thousands of women – including me as a former women’s basketball student-athlete – and provided a pathway in the continued pursuit of achieving gender equity in intercollegiate athletics.
- Yesterday the NCAA named the members of its newly constituted Board of Governors, and I was honored to be included as one of the nine voting members. As many of you know, these are transformational times for intercollegiate athletics, and it’s important that the Big 12 Conference and Baylor, as a preeminent Christian research university, have a seat at the table. The Board of Governors is the highest governance body for the NCAA and has several responsibilities, including oversight of the finances of the Association, media rights and revenue-producing contracts.
- Baylor’s partnership with the Waco community is extremely important, and recently we were proud to recognize several individuals who make a difference in the collective social and economic progress of our local community. This year’s Champions of Change include:
- Alumni: Pearlie Beverly, M.S.Ed., director of multicultural affairs;
- Faculty: Lori Baker, Ph.D., vice provost for faculty development and diversity and professor of anthropology; and
- Staff: Crystal Diaz-Espinoza, Ph.D., director of enrollment and alumni services for the Diana R. Garland School of Social Work.
As part of the ceremony, we also recognized the dedication and leadership of Solid Gold Neighbors within the Waco community, as well as the inaugural cohort of Solid Gold Neighbor Research Fellows. You can see the full list of honorees here.
I hope everyone is having a great summer. It’s hard to believe that June is almost over!
Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.
PHOTO OF THE WEEK
The First Gent helped keep the Baylor balloon 6-foot-10 inches off the ground as part of the University’s significant presence in Waco’s Juneteenth parade and celebrations last Saturday.