Faculty and Staff - February 15, 2019

Dear Colleagues:
In the four short months since October’s State of the University Address, much has been accomplished thanks to the campus community’s dedication and efforts. As a result, I have shared several good news items which are directly related to the Winthrop Plan. Those included:

· Reaching a record number of freshman applications
· Surpassing our target and stretch target goals for the percentage of our faculty/managerial staff who are African American, Latin American, Native American, Asian or International
· Securing $3.4 million in state contracts for Winthrop’s Center for Public Opinion & Policy Research
· Exceeding our 2025 fundraising goal for unrestricted annual giving
· Recording our highest yet 6-year graduation rate and surpassing our 2025 goal
· Launching varsity eSports this fall

I’d like to thank each of you for your contributions in helping Winthrop achieve these milestones, and I will continue to pass along items like this that relate to the plan.

I want to update you on a few things this month...

Trustee Retreat
The Board of Trustees will be holding a two-day retreat February 22-23. We will be discussing a wide variety of topics from each division within the university, with a particular focus on budget, enrollment and our work with EAB on financial aid leveraging. Please be on the lookout for the retreat agenda which will be emailed to the campus community several days in advance.

Presentation to Senate Subcommittee
I will be traveling to Columbia later this month to update the Senate Finance Higher Education Subcommittee on our budget requests, as I did with the House subcommittee last month. This is a particularly interesting year with higher education funding being given a considerable amount of attention. There are a number of different proposals currently being presented by the governor, the house, and the senate and these presentations provide us an opportunity to make our case for what would be the most beneficial to Winthrop.

Provost Search Update
The Provost Search Committee recently completed interviews with an initial round of qualified candidates. The committee will soon bring forward a slate of finalists who will be on campus in March. Finalists will be on campus for two days, give a presentation to the campus community, and participate in interviews and meetings that will give everyone an opportunity to get to know them better. More information about chosen finalists and their scheduled visits will be sent out soon.

Plans for the Morgan-Holcombe Alumni and Admissions Center, Closing of Inn at Winthrop
There are exciting developments in our goal to formally name an important campus space for benefactors Betty ‘56 and Milton Holcombe of Dallas, Texas. Architects are working on Joynes Hall renovation designs so that later this year the Morgan-Holcombe Alumni & Admissions Center will become a reality.  Joynes will be undergoing renovations starting this summer that will necessitate the permanent closing of the Inn at Winthrop on July 1. While Winthrop was pleased to provide the inn and its convenience to visitors for a number of years, it was not a significant revenue stream for the university and will be needed less with new hotels scheduled to open up near campus. When complete, the new center will have advancement and admissions sharing Joynes’ first floor, while the second and third floors will house admissions and alumni/development staff members respectively.

Please know that I appreciate all of your hard work, and I thank you for all that you do for Winthrop.