Letters to Campus Community
Fall Semester 2009 Welcome
Sept. 9, 2009
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Hello, and welcome to the Fall 2009 semester at the University of Michigan! I especially want to welcome our new students to campus. You are joining an outstanding community of scholars and leaders.
Whether you are an incoming freshman or a longtime member of the faculty or staff, the upcoming weeks and months promise to be rich with celebration, reflection and discovery throughout the University.
Here at the Law Quad, we are celebrating 150 years of legal education at Michigan.
Ours is a law school renowned for academic excellence, collegiality, and an architectural setting that is second to none. To celebrate this anniversary, we will host John G. Roberts Jr., chief justice of the United States Supreme Court. We will also break ground on a new academic building that will complement the beauty of the Law Quad. And we will welcome back hundreds of alumni to campus and their academic home.
We are making history of a different kind across campus, where the North Campus Research Complex is unfolding for a new era of scientific discovery at Michigan. We are being deliberate in our plans for this site, with its 30 buildings, 174 acres, and infinite potential. Our overarching goal is to advance research and innovation, with partnerships across campus and throughout the Ann Arbor community.
In the classrooms, our academic theme year in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts centers on the contributions of university museums. Our campus is rich with museums that showcase different cultures through words, images, artifacts, plants and animals. Our theme year features more than 30 courses, public lectures, special exhibits, and museum tours. This includes the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology, which opens its new Upjohn Exhibit Wing in November to display objects from ancient civilizations.
Creativity is the focus of a new program in Interarts Performance for students who love theatre, the visual arts, and performing. The first of its kind in the nation, this undergraduate degree is offered by the School of Art & Design and the School of Music, Theatre & Dance.
Other students are displaying their innovation through the Solar Car Team, which competes this October in the World Solar Challenge in Australia. And still others are sharing their talents through our Landscape Architecture program, which is celebrating its 100th year of blending the social and natural sciences.
This is the sound of a Michigan tradition: the Men’s Glee Club. It has been a campus fixture since before the Civil War, and at 150 years old, is the oldest continually run student group at Michigan. This November, at Hill Auditorium, they will present their 150th Annual Fall Concert.
The University of Michigan is never more vibrant than in the fall. From football and tailgates, to engaging courses and performances, our campus offers countless opportunities to learn, grow and make a difference.
I look forward to seeing you on campus.
Mary Sue Coleman