Dear Pitt Students, Faculty and Staff:
It’s hard to believe that the first day of classes is already upon us. In many ways, it feels like summer just started. Perhaps the amazing amount of change we’ve packed into these last few months has contributed to summer’s rapid run. To call out a few of these highlights:
- We welcomed new faces in several leadership positions, including:
- Provost Ann Cudd (who officially starts on Sept. 1 but is already here and busy);
- Interim President of Pitt-Bradford and Pitt-Titusville Larry Feick;
- Chief Investment Officer Greg Schuler;
- School of Social Work Dean Betsy Farmer;
- Swanson School of Engineering Dean Jimmy Martin; and
- School of Law Dean Amy Wildermuth.
- The Commonwealth finalized the state budget early and approved a 3 percent increase in funding support for Pitt. As a result, we set a university budget that supported our operations while offering the funding needed to avoid tuition increases for nearly all in-state students.
- We achieved all-time records in start-ups based on Pitt technology (23) and sponsored research activity ($808 million). And we closed the books on one of the strongest fundraising years in our university’s history.
- Add to this: The completion of key facility projects. This includes three on our Pittsburgh campus: Classroom renovations in Posvar Hall, a major renovation of the Hillman Library’s fourth floor and a redesign of Schenley Quad. On our Bradford campus, we opened a new residence facility—the Livingston Alexander House—and wrapped renovations on the Frame-Westerberg Commons Dining Hall. And in Johnstown, we kicked off construction on a chemical engineering addition to Murtha Engineering and Science Building.
When you combine these changes with the welcome chaos of a fresh start, it can be hard to look beyond the here-and-now. But, for students, faculty and staff members alike, this bigger picture reminds us that—more than any other point in our history—it’s an extraordinary time to be at Pitt.
Today, you are part of a University community that is reaching new heights in achievement, reputation and impact. And perhaps no achievement showcases our potential better than Pitt’s Class of 2022. These students are not just the most academically accomplished incoming class on record. They are also the most racially and ethnically diverse and include more international and out-of-state students than any new class in our University’s long history.
It’s an inspiring starting point. It’s also a clear opportunity to come together and work together to extend Pitt’s proud record of achievements while advancing our mission of leveraging knowledge for society’s gain.
So, once again, welcome. It’s sure to be an exciting year. After all: There has never been a better time to be at Pitt.
Chancellor Patrick Gallagher