Presidential Perspective - October 26, 2023

October 26, 2023

Baylor Students, Faculty, Staff and Parents:

Someone asked about my favorite Homecoming tradition, and I must admit that I don’t have just one – I love them ALL! Our students and staff have done such a wonderful job preparing to welcome Baylor alumni and friends back to campus for the nation’s oldest Homecoming, dating back to 1909.

Be sure to check out the full calendar for all the Homecoming Festivities, and I hope to see you around campus over the next few days. Sic ’em, Bears!

Some updates for this busy week:

  • HANKAMER CENTENNIAL: Tomorrow at 6 p.m., Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business will launch its Centennial celebration with the HSB Alumni Homecoming Reception in the Paul J. Meyer Conference Center (room 250) in the Paul L. Foster Center for Business and Innovation. This fall marks 100 years since the first students enrolled in what was known in 1923 as the Business Administration Department. The celebration will last through May 2025, recognizing the first graduates of the Business School who earned their BBA degrees in 1925. Congratulations to Hankamer School of Business alumni, students, faculty and staff on this significant milestone. Let the Centennial celebration begin! 

  • TRICK OR TREAT: Be sure to include Allbritton House in your trick-or-treating plans next Tuesday beginning at 5:30 p.m. for Halloween Night. The First Gent and I will be on the front lawn, and rumor has it that we give out full-size candy bars …

  • HALLOWEEN CONCERT FOR ALL: Then head on over to the School of Music’s annual Halloween Organ Concert at 7:30 p.m. in Jones Concert Hall in the McCrary Music Building. Our talented organ students will treat audiences to movie music favorites, including tunes from Oppenheimer, Indiana Jones, Twilight and more. Come in costume for special treats! The concert is free and open to the public. 

  • AI SEMINAR REMINDER: The Office of the Provost and Academy for Teaching and Learning will host a faculty panel discussion TODAY from 3:30 to 5 p.m. on “Understanding AI and How it Works” in Kayser Auditorium (Hankamer Academic Center H101).

  • FACULTY AND STAFF CHAPEL: I hope you are planning to attend this fall’s Faculty and Staff Chapel service at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 1, in the Powell Chapel at Truett Seminary. Dr. Emmanuel Roldan, Senior Pastor of Primera Iglesia Bautista de Waco, will lead this special time of workshop. Many of you will remember we established Faculty and Staff Chapel last November as part of Baylor’s campuswide Spiritual Wellbeing initiative. The services, conducted once per semester, bring a guest congregation to campus and complement both our personal spiritual growth and Baylor’s mission – where faith is central to who we are and how we prepare men and women for a life of leadership and service in the world. 

  • BENEFITS OPEN ENROLLMENT: Faculty and staff, open enrollment is underway through Oct. 31, which is our once-a-year opportunity to review and update benefits elections, including health-related insurances, to make sure they continue meeting your needs. This is an active enrollment so you will need to take action and select your benefit elections through Benefitfocus, even if you are not making changes to your current elections. Helpful information is available on the 2024 Benefits Enrollment website.

  • MEDICAL HUMANITIES CHAIR: Earlier today, we announced a $2 million gift from Scott and Susan Orr of The Woodlands, Texas, establishing the Scott & Susan Orr Family Endowed Chair in Medical Humanities & Christian Faith to support teaching, mentorship and innovative research in our premier undergraduate Medical Humanities Program. I am truly grateful for the Orrs, their family’s generous support of our faculty and their commitment to Baylor’s Christian mission and vision, including transformational undergraduate education. The Orr Family Chair also received matching support through the Give Light Campaign’s Illuminate Chair Matching Program, bringing the total number of new endowed chair and faculty positions funded by Give Light to 45. 

I can’t wait to walk the Homecoming Parade Saturday morning!

Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.


Students, be on the lookout for the 2023 Homecoming keepsake poster available throughout this week at special pop-up events. Supplies are limited.