A message to the Transylvania community

On July 1, Brien Lewis became the 28th president of Transylvania University. Watch his video message to campus above, which is also transcribed below. 

I’m excited and honored to be starting my service as the 28th president of Transylvania University. 

Our entire campus community looks forward to welcoming you back to our campus, where we’re going to be focusing first and foremost on the health and safety of all members of the campus community, as well as focusing on delivering the exceptional education for which Transylvania University is so well known. 

It’s a new year with new leadership. Joining me will be our new academic dean, Dr. Becky Thomas; our new vice president for diversity and inclusion, Dr. Deidra Dennie; and our new vice president for strategic initiatives and enrollment management, Sarah Coen.

We’re going to be facing some new challenges, but, as James Baldwin said, “Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it’s faced.” 

We will be facing the challenges posed by the pandemic. It’s going to result in needing to be nimble, needing to be adaptable and patient, needing to put up with occasional inconveniences, like wearing a mask. It’s part of our ongoing commitment to serve our students and our community. 

Another commitment that’s important to us is our commitment to access and personal development. To fulfill that commitment, we really need to identify concrete steps so that we can address systemic racism and live out our belief that Black Lives Matter.

And of course, we’re going to be enhancing our capacities to deliver on our core value and our enduring educational mission. 

We’re all about preparing the leaders of the future. It’s what Transylvania has been doing so well for 240 years. Because we know it’s not just about preparing you for that first job or that first career, but for those challenges that you’ll be facing in jobs and careers 20 and 30 years from now that haven’t even been invented yet.

So come see what we’re doing at Transy. Be part of our bold pursuit of excellence. And when you come to campus, make sure you bring your mask.