Dr. Philip A. Glotzbach
President of Skidmore College
Philip A. Glotzbach became the seventh President of Skidmore College on July 1, 2003. A philosopher, academic administrator, and spokesperson on issues of higher education, he joined the College following eleven years at the University of Redlands in southern California
Community Dialogue Series
Dear Members of the Skidmore Community:
As included in the Strategic Action Agenda (SAA) associated with Skidmore's Strategic Plan, I am announcing the first phase of a Presidential speaker series, which we are calling a "Community Dialogue Series," designed to bring noted experts to campus to lead meaningful dialogues around significant issues that affect us as a community.
The first three events in the ongoing series begin next week. They include:
The Contours of Free Speech on Campus
Featuring Frederick M. Lawrence, Secretary, The Phi Beta Kappa Society
Wednesday, February, 22, 2017
Luncheon, 12:15-1:30 p.m., Murray-Aikins Dining Hall, 2nd Floor
This is a sign-up first come, first-served event with slots for students, staff, faculty, and trustees.
Immigration and the Future of DACA— Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals
Featuring David W. Oxtoby, President, Pomona College
Thursday, February 23, 2017
4:00-4:45 p.m., Gannett Auditorium
This event is open to all community members.
Institutional Values and Investment Decisions
Featuring David W. Oxtoby, President, Pomona College, and a Panel Discussion
Thursday, February 23, 2017
5:00-6:15 p.m., Murray-Aikins Dining Hall, 2nd Floor
This event is open to all community members.
We are also planning an event on the topic of diversity and inclusion for mid-April. I will share information about that event with you when the details are finalized. For now, I invite you to take the time to participate in these opportunities. Please bring your ideas and opinions as we learn from our speakers and each other. Thank you.
Michael Casey, Collyer Vice President for Advancement
I write to share the news that after 17 years with Skidmore College, Michael Casey, the Collyer Vice President for Advancement, will step down this spring to become the vice president for advancement at Trinity College in Hartford, Conn.
Michael came to Skidmore from Wesleyan University’s advancement office, following advancement positions at Franklin & Marshall and the Baltimore Museum of Art. Throughout our 14 years together, Michael has been a wonderful colleague and collaborator. As a new president, I benefited considerably from his experience and expertise in fundraising. He has also been a tremendous help to me in crafting speeches and other texts, and he has always taken an institution-wide perspective, pushing for excellence in all areas. He will be greatly missed.
Michael joined the Skidmore community in July of 2000 and built professional teams in the areas he supervised. During his tenure, the College raised more than a half-billion dollars for a range of initiatives including the construction of the Arthur Zankel Music Center. He also secured support for financial aid and academic programs including 15 endowed chairs and the John B. Moore Documentary Studies Collaborative, as well as facilities and athletics and student affairs initiatives.
From 2004 to 2010, Michael oversaw the "Creative Thought. Bold Promise" Campaign, which raised a record $216.5 million. In recent years he has overseen the quiet phase and public launch plan for the current effort, "Creating Our Future: The Campaign for Skidmore," which has already raised $132.5 million. He participated in the creation of several important volunteer support organizations such as the Friends of Skidmore Athletics and the President’s Advisory Council, helped shape the new Communications and Marketing Office in 2015, and played a lead role in the 2001 crafting and development of the College’s highly successful branding platform "Creative Thought Matters."
Michael has been deeply involved in the greater Saratoga Springs community, including service on the boards of the Waldorf School, the Convention and Tourism Bureau, SaratogaArtsFest, and the YMCA.
Michael shared with me the following thoughts to be conveyed to his colleagues: "It has been a great honor to serve Skidmore these past 17 years, and a real pleasure to work with so many wonderful volunteers, donors, staff, and trustees and to see their tremendous commitment to the College and, most important, to our students."
I am pleased to announce that Kimberly Verstandig, our campaign director and associate vice president for advancement, will assume the role of interim vice president on March 1, until we complete a national search for Michael’s successor. Kim, who has been at Skidmore since 2012, formerly served as executive director of alumni and constituent relations at Bucknell University, senior development officer at Albany Medical Center, and director of advancement at the Albany Academies. She holds a B.S. in business administration and an M.A. in education from Bucknell. I am grateful to her for taking on this important assignment.
Michael will continue as a transitional advisor to Kim and the division until June 1. He begins his new assignment at Trinity later that month.
Please join me in thanking Michael Casey for all he has accomplished on behalf of Skidmore and wishing him well in his new position.
Immigration and the Skidmore community
Dear Members of the Skidmore Community,
Many of us have been following the recent decisions and executive orders emerging from the Trump Administration that sharply restrict both immigration and border entry for persons from a number of Muslim-majority countries and suspend the refugee program for 120 days. Several other related legal developments subsequently have occurred, and this remains a dynamic and evolving situation.
Currently, a significant contingent of Skidmore students, faculty, and staff come from scores of countries around the world, some of them from regions directly affected by these executive orders. But these political developments touch all of us either directly or indirectly.
As we await further decisions and developments, let me reaffirm our pertinent institutional values:
- We reaffirm Skidmore’s membership in the international community of scholars, educators, and students within colleges and universities across our nation and throughout the world. It is our priority to foster in our students, as fundamental aspects of their liberal education, both intercultural awareness and global understanding. We actively recruit students from across the world, and we actively encourage all of our students to study abroad. It is clear that educated persons today must understand the myriad ways the countries and peoples of the world are increasingly interconnected and share a basic humanity, interrelated interests, and ultimately a common fate.
- As our current Strategic Plan makes clear, Skidmore is also deeply committed to fostering inclusive excellence — affirming that our diversity makes us a stronger, more vibrant, and more creative community, provided we enable everyone to participate fully in our shared enterprise. Our international students are a key part of this vitality.
- We have long been committed to policies of nondiscrimination on the basis of race, religion, or national origin. We do not discriminate in staff and faculty employment or student Admissions or any other area based on a student’s immigration status. We comply with relevant legal requirements, but we do not otherwise seek or disseminate information about our students’ immigration status, and we strive to protect the privacy of all our students.
- In times of difficulty, the Skidmore community comes together to support one another and to reach out, especially, to members who are in distress. This is a moment when we need to show solidarity with all our international students, faculty members, and staff members – especially those from countries affected by these recent developments. Personal expressions of care and concern can go a long way to reassure people that they are valued and, above all, that they are not alone.
Going forward, we will continue to closely monitor developments in national policy and their legal implications for the College. I am currently in Washington, D.C. attending the annual meeting of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU). I will speak to staff members at NAICU and directly with some of our federal legislators and their staffs to learn more about what we can do, and I will share this information with you.
For any community member who would like to discuss this further, please consider reaching out to the following offices: Dean of the Faculty, Dean of Students, Human Resources, Religious and Spiritual Life, Office Campus Study & Exchanges, Student Academic Services, and the Counseling Center.
This is an important time for all of us to listen to one another with compassion, seek understanding, and speak with respect for the multiplicity of beliefs and perspectives that characterizes a liberal arts college worthy of that title.