Engaging on Multiple Levels

Spring 2011 Focus cover     From Focus magazine, Spring 2011 >>

(President's Letter)

On April 2, Lauren and I had the pleasure of attending a senior vocal recital presented by Matt Reese. He was kind enough to invite us, and we joined hundreds in Legacy Hall for a magnificent evening of music from Ravel to Sondheim.

The evening reinforced the power of teaching and the impact Columbus State University has on our students. Matt and other May 2011 graduates will pursue graduate studies, while scores will join the workforce, becoming teachers, nurses, computer programmers, second lieutenants and more. At our recent Career Fair, orchestrated by our Center for Career Development, the largest number of CSU students ever participated in a slowly improving job market that portends better things to come for these and future graduates.

Each month during this academic year, our Enrollment Management team has me visiting high schools in metropolitan Atlanta. In Gwinnett, Cobb, Fulton, DeKalb, Rockdale and Newton counties, along with the Muscogee, Atlanta and Marietta public school systems, I have had the honor of bringing greetings and opportunities from Columbus State University to dozens of college counselors and their thousands of advisees. Recruiting Director Kristin Williams and her team have been working mightily to deliver the Columbus State University message to the complex metro Atlanta marketplace. All 35 University System of Georgia institutions are deeply interested in drawing students from this source of more than 55 percent of all Georgia high school graduates.

Our recruiters have demonstrated professionalism and efficacy by building "brand awareness" for all that's distinct about CSU in this complex arena. How wonderful it was to visit in a Cobb County high school with a CSU senior teaching there this semester. Likewise, what a pleasant surprise to find a College of Education and Health Professions graduate student interning in a counseling center at a DeKalb County high school. It's worth noting our student is completing an M.S. in counseling from a program reviewed by the Council on Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs, an independent agency that accredits master's degree programs in counseling. Her advisor in DeKalb indicated their system would only consider hiring students from CACREP-accredited graduate programs such as we have at Columbus State.

Our second cohort in our education doctoral program is well under way. Our incredible new Student Recreation Center has become a hub of student wellness. The Department of Communication is renovating at RiverPark, in the Carpenters Building, for a broadcast program, and this summer, we will move into a magnificent new facility at Oxbow Meadows Environmental Learning Center as part of a collaborative community effort with Columbus Water Works.

These are all signs of an engaged university that, guided by exceptional faculty, delivers cutting-edge programs that continue to reinforce the value of the Columbus State University experience.

(Signed, Timothy S. Mescon)